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Travel Tryout FAQs

Below are some FAQs related to travel tryouts

What are the birth year and playing age groups (e.g., U9, U10, U11, etc)

Here is a link to a matrix available on our website that shows the correlation between birth year and playing age groups and format.  If your child was born in 2012, please see the FAQ below for those born in 2012 that are interested in playing travel.

What if my child cannot attend scheduled tryout date/time?

We publish scheduled tryout dates early to allow maximum time for schedule planning.  Parents and players should make every effort possible to attend the appropriate age group tryout.  It is the only way to ensure an apples-to-apples comparison of similarly aged players, with the exact same evaluators, and ultimately help produce the fairest assessment possible. This is particularly important at the U11 through U15 levels (born in 2005-2009), since teams are formed based on demonstrated ability at tryouts.

Per section 11.8 of our bylaws, if a player cannot make his or her try out time:

  • they can tryout with the next highest age group with the approval of the Travel Team Committee (TTC).  In other words, if a player born in 2009 cannot attend the assigned tryout time – they can with approval of the TTC try out with 2008 players of the same gender.
  • If a player is does not attend a tryout at either their age group or the next older age group, then the TTC will exercise their discretion using available data (last year’s scores if available, consultation with coaches, etc) in assessing appropriate player ranking and ultimately roster placement.  This is clearly NOT the preferred outcome for ALSO or the player so please do make every effort to attend the scheduled tryout time.

If a player wants to play travel soccer in the coming year and is not able to attend the assigned tryout, parents should reach out to the relevant travel director listed below to work out alternate arrangements.  Thank you to those that have done so already.  

What if I have questions about the tryout process?

Please attend the information meeting on April 4th at the AL Library from 7-8pm.  Our Travel Team Committee will provide a presentation on the travel program, tryout process, evaluation criteria and be available to answer questions. A copy of the presentation will be available on our website after the presentation. Additionally, our bylaws cover a number of details on the tryout and evaluation process.

Who is on the Travel Team Committee (TTC) and what is their role?

The TTC’s core members from the ALSO Board are the Director of Coaching (Chair) and the Boys and Girls Travel Directors. They collaborate to administer all aspects of the travel program in consultation with the ALSO Board and subject to our bylaws. 

As it relates to tryouts, the TTC is responsible for the administration of tryouts and ultimately making recommendations to the Board for approval prior to each annual season:

  • Number of teams to be formed at each age group,
  • Projected roster sizes of each team, and
  • Recommended Head Coaches for each team.

What if my child is born in 2012 and wants to play travel?

Players born in 2012 can tryout to play at the U9 travel level if parents believe they are of adequate ability and maturity, and that their development would be better suited by the travel vs. our recreation program. 

Please note that a roster spot is not guaranteed, and 2011 birth year players take priority for roster spots in the upcoming season.  In addition, there are tryout minimum scores described in our bylaws where a roster spot is not guaranteed if a player does not achieve the minimum score.  The U8 development academy program is also another great option for age-appropriate players.  It’s specifically designed to help prepare players at the U8 level for transition to the travel program.

 What if my child is currently playing “up” (at older age group) or wants to play “up” next year?

Any player desiring to play up at an older age group in the coming seasonal year is required to notify their respective travel director in advance and attend both their age-appropriate tryout time as well as the older age group tryout.  For example, if a player born in 2009 desires to play in the 2008 age group – they are required to attend the tryout session for both age groups. The Travel Team Committee (TTC) and evaluators will monitor player playing time of impacted players to ensure adequate rest between sessions.

The above applies to players currently playing up in an age group as well. As prior year tryout results are no guarantee of current ability, it’s important to assess accurate player placement each year.

A player desiring to play up an age group must place in the top 25% of the older age group and meet minimums in all rated categories to be eligible for a roster position. Final roster eligibility will be determined by the TTC to ensure (1) the older age group is not forced to cut a player from the travel program (that has met minimum requirements) due to roster size limitations, and (2) that maturity and coachability of the player is appropriate for the older age group.  Final recommendations are made by the TTC for ALSO Board approval.

What if my child doesn’t make a team?

We make every effort to place as many players as possible at the right level of competition.  In rare circumstances, there can be occasions when overall numbers of players and roster limits from our sanctioning bodies make us unable to offer a roster spot.  In those cases, registration funds are reimbursed in full.

Can I get a refund if my child decides not to play?

If a parent/player decides after tryouts to withdraw from the travel program and not participate in the coming season, they must notify the relevant travel director by July 1st to receive a refund (minus a $50 fee to cover tryout and other administrative expenses).

Refunds for withdrawal requests after July 1st are not guaranteed and may be subject to additional administrative reductions as player carding and other costs begin to be incurred by ALSO.