August Newsletter 2023

Welcome to the Kings Hammer August Newsletter! This edition features Kings Hammer Walkout Kids for FCC vs Inter Miami FC, Center of Excellence, 3v3 Kickoff Classic, Battle in the Bluegrass, ECNL Player Achievements, Content Feedback Survey, Fan Wear, and more!  If you have a player, coach, or team to be highlighted in future newsletters, please send photos and stories to Each newsletter will be posted on our website as well as our social pages.

Kings Hammer Selected as Walkout Kids for FC Cincinnati vs Inter Miami FC

Kings Hammer was honored to be selected to participate as walkout kids for the FC Cincinnati vs Inter Miami CF match last night. While the result didn’t go FC Cincinnati’s way, we’re still proud of our team & our city! What a special night last night. The players had a once in a lifetime experience and enjoyed every second.

Center of Excellence U8-U12

Registration is still open for the South Center of Excellence (COE) Fall Training Program for U8-U12 players that are not currently on a Kings Hammer roster for the Fall 2023 Season. Players that are currently rostered on a Kings Hammer team for the Fall season do not need to register. The COE Fall Training Program is included in the team fees.

The COE Fall Training Program is a 6-week program that will take place at Town & Country in Wilder, KY. The program will focus on individual player development (technically and tactically) in the four phases of the game: attacking, transition to attack, defending and transition to defending.

South COE (Town & Country Turf: 1018 Town Dr. Wilder, KY 41076)

  • Dates: 8/25, 9/1, 9/22, 9/29, 10/6, 10/13
  • Times: U8/U9: 5:30-6:45pm & U10/U11/U12: 7-8:30pm

For any questions on the Center of Excellence Fall Training Program please contact Michael Ratliff at

3v3 Kickoff Classic

Thank you to everyone that participated in the 3v3 Kickoff Classic on August 5th & 6th at Town & Country! It was fun to watch all the skills that were on display throughout the weekend. A special thanks to everyone involved for providing rides, encouragement, coaching, and so much more to help these players stay involved! We hope everyone enjoyed the event and we look forward to this event again next year!

Battle in the Bluegrass

We kicked off our fall season by hosting the Battle in the Bluegrass on August 11th-13th! The Woodford Youth Soccer Complex was packed with soccer action the entire weekend.  We appreciate all the teams and families that kicked off the fall season with us. We were treated to some great weather, great games, and very competitive championship matches. Thank you to all of the referees, volunteers, and parents for making the 2023 Battle In the Bluegrass such a great event!  If you weren’t able to purchase event merchandise on site during the event, it’s not too late to purchase. You can visit our online store and have your event merchandise shipped to you. Click here to order online now!

We would also like to send a special thank you to our event partners:

University of Kentucky Sports Medicine- Athletic Training Services
Trophy Awards- Official Awards Supplier of Kings Hammer Events
PYB Sports- Official Event Housing Partner
Nike Soccer- Official Brand Partner

We look forward to hosting our next event the Cincy Challenge on September 22nd-24th!

Kings Hammer ECNL Players Named Ohio Valley All-Conference, All-Regional League, and All-American

Congratulations to the following Kings Hammer ECNL players, we are proud of all your hardwork!


  • Maddox Pemberton – U15 First Team All-Conference
  • Chase McCarthy – U15 Second Team All-Conference
  • Parker Byland – U16 First Team All-Conference
  • Karson Lang – U16 First Team All-Conference
  • Donovan Lameier – U16 Second Team All-Conference
  • Jason Tiesmann – U17 Second Team All-Conference
  • Jonah Arszman – U18/19 First Team All-Conference
  • Landon Barth – U18/19 Second Team All-Conference
  • Diego Lakkis – U15 & U16 All-Regional League
  • David Anataki – U17 All-Regional League
  • Brody Blazer – U17 All-Regional League
  • Alex Morris – U18/19 All-Regional League
  • Tyler Smith – U18/19 All-Regional League
  • Kyle Ziegelmeyer – U18/19 All-Regional League


  • Charlee Siria – U15 Player of the Year, First Team All-Conference, & All-American
  • Lauren Hoog – U15 First Team All-Conference
  • Allison McCauley – U15 Second Team All-Conference
  • Lucy Perusek – U16 Second Team All-Conference
  • Millie Cluxton – U17 Second Team All-Conference
  • Amanda Schlueter – U18/19 First Team All-Conference
  • Aliana Weibel – U18/19 Second Team All-Conference
  • Megan Johns – U15 All-Regional League
  • Emma O’Brien – U15 All-Regional League
  • Macy Yelton – U15 All-Regional League
  • Keeley Polk – U16 All-Regional League
  • Ava Meyer – U17 All-Regional League
  • Sydney Bortz – U18/19 All-Regional League
  • Brooke Wilson – U18/19 All-Regional League

Content Feedback Survey

We want to hear from you! Please take a minute to complete a quick Content Feedback Survey with 9 questions. Your answers will help as we start creating content for the 2023/2024 Season!

Click here to take the survey!

Kings Hammer Fan Wear

Gear up for the fall season and shop Kings Hammer! Lots of items are available, including hoodies, tees, hats, scarves, stickers plus more on the way.

Click here to check out what’s new in the Kings Hammer Shop now!

August Education: Helping Our Players Become Good Teammates

“Sports build character.”

This statement has been a driving force behind getting children engaged in team sports for as long as I can remember.  Being on a team can help develop communication, problem-solving, relationship building, —— But being a good teammate does not come naturally, nor easily.  And, if we don’t help with it the “Character” they build could be a bad one.

Most parents, and coaches as well, have likely experienced the season where there may have been skillful and effect players, but there weren’t many good teammates.  Poor attitudes, selfish play, outbursts, constant blaming, players making fun of their teammates, and other negative factors can lead to a bad experience and a long season.

This past month all of our coaches and teams returned to practices, working to improve the skills needed to succeed in the game.  Dribbling, passing, receiving, shooting, and other elements of the game are being taught, demonstrated, encouraged, and practiced in order to help players excel and become their best. In order for players to develop good character and become good teammates our players need similar practice, guidance, encouragement, and modeling from parents, coaches, and other players on the components of a good teammate as well.

So what characteristics are we looking for in a “Good Teammate”?

I would suggest that coaches take 5-10 minutes before an upcoming practice and put this question to their players.  What would they like to see, hear, or experience from a good teammate?  What words or actions do they associate with a poor teammate? How does each of them demonstrate being a good teammate.  You can use their responses to layout a framework to guide your season.

The Positive Coaching Alliance put together a long framework for “What Makes a Great Teammate” in 2017.  You can view the entire list by clicking on the link above.  I recently came across a blog: Coffee and Carpools, which explored the topic and some of the characteristics from the PCA article. For this discussion I would like to present five of those characteristics (adapted from the article) for us to focus on.

  1. Good teammates are positive, supportive, and encouraging on and off the field.
  2. A good teammate hustles and gives it their all at practices and games. Despite their ability level, place on the team, or the outcome.
  3. A good teammate shows respect and good sportsmanship.
  4. A good teammate is generous and shows humility.
  5. Help your teammates in need.

Click here to view the full story.

Ben Kirkpatrick Named Coach of the Year by Kentucky Youth Soccer

Congratulations to Kings Hammer coach, Ben Kirkpatrick on receiving the 2023 Boys Competitive Coach of the Year! We’re proud of all your hard work, Ben!

Soccer Uniform & Equipment Donation Program

Are you interested in donating used soccer uniforms or equipment? Kings Hammer has partnered with Covington Catholic senior and club member, Jacob Brown, to collect used soccer uniforms and equipment to send to children in need at the Canary Islands. We are accepting any of the following types of gear: jerseys, shirts, shorts, jackets, backpacks, shin guards, socks, cleats, and soccer balls. We thank you in advance for your generosity! 

Donations can be made at the following locations: 

  • Kings Hammer Office (50 E Rivercenter Blvd Covington, KY Suite 150) Monday-Friday: 9am-5pm 
  • Town & Country (Box will be by restrooms near soccer field) Monday-Friday: 6am-9pm & Saturday/Sunday: 8am-6pm 

We also offer a pickup option. Contact for more info. 

Kings Hammer is Hiring

Looking for a career in the sports industry? Kings Hammer Soccer Club is looking to staff positions in our club’s soccer operations, marketing and events departments.

Click here to learn more about the open positions


Tryout FAQ’s

How do I register for tryouts?
ALL soccer-athletes MUST COMPLETE the tryout registration online before participating in the tryout process. Click here to register now!

*Please make sure that you register online at least 24 hours in advance to ensure that the soccer athlete is in the system and we have your information to notify you after the tryout process.  There is a Registration Steps document on the Tryouts page that will walk you through the process. Each soccer athlete should attend both tryout days if possible. If you are unable to attend both days please reach out to the Program Director listed below.

Birth Years for the 2022/2023 Season
For the 2022/2023 season, Kings Hammer will follow U.S Youth Soccer’s guidelines and will organize its teams by birth year:

*Interested players must register to try out for their birth year.

Can my child play up an age group?
Any player playing up will be at the discretion of their respective director. All players need to register and attend the tryout for their correct age group.

What should I wear/bring to tryouts?
Please come prepared with a fully inflated soccer ball, proper footwear, shin guards, and water. Each prospective soccer-athlete will receive one free Kings Hammer Soccer Club tryout t-shirt with a tryout identification number on the back of the t-shirt.  Each prospective player will be identified by the identification number throughout the process and MUST wear this t-shirt at each tryout session for the 2022/2023 soccer year.

We will not be able to attend tryouts or are new to the area and missed tryouts. Is there a process in place to allow for an alternate tryout?
Yes! If you are not able to attend tryouts or missed the tryout dates, please register and then contact the Director for the Program/Age Group you wish to tryout for so that arrangements can be made. We also hold supplemental tryouts throughout the year. Roster openings may be limited after the initial tryout period.

What are the differences between Academy and Premier?
Our Academy provides a highly competitive environment for higher-level soccer athletes. This program provides those athletes with the best local training offered by our qualified and professional staff. Our Academy teams play at the highest possible level providing showcase opportunities to College, Professional, and National level programs.

The Premier Program is a community-based program. The Premier Program provides the opportunity for players to play other sports or have other interests outside of soccer. This program is designed to be flexible, convenient, and affordable.

Can I try out for multiple programs?
We encourage anyone who wants to tryout for all levels to do so. Current KHSC players can ask their coach/director for guidance if they are unsure about which program to tryout for. You will need to register for each tryout separately.

If I tryout for a program and don’t make it, can I try out for another program?
Yes. If you don’t make an Academy team, we strongly encourage you to tryout for a Premier team, attending tryouts for at least one day.

If you don’t make a Premier team, the Classic Program may be an option. Contact Michelle Okumura ( if you’d like to pursue this option.

Will there be more than one team in each age group?
Yes, when possible, there will be more than one team per age group, per program. It all depends on the number of players at tryouts and their skill level.

If my child doesn’t make the top team, can they move up during the year?
Yes, there may be opportunities to move up throughout the year as long as the coach/director feels it is in the best interest of the player’s development. There may also be opportunities to guest play across all levels.

What can I expect after tryouts?
After tryouts you can expect communication from the club in the form of an email.  (Please double-check that your email is correct in the PlayMetrics system, this is the email we use) This will either be an acceptance email, offering your child a position on a team, or an email letting you know that they should tryout for a different program. Players who are offered positions on a team may also receive a phone call from their coach. All communication will come within 24-48 hours of the end of the last tryout. You will then have 24 hours to either accept or decline your email before your spot is offered to another child.

What are the next steps if my child makes a team?

  1. If you are new to the club, you will receive more information regarding your uniform ordering in your confirmation email.
  2. If you are part of the Academy or Premier Programs, you will receive the link to Demosphere to register your child in the state system in your confirmation email as well.

How long is the season?

  • Academy
    • U11-U14: August-November, January-May (possible post-season in June)
    • U15-U19: November-May
  • Premier
    • U7-U14: August-October, March-May
    • U15-U19: November-December, March-May

My child is in middle school but plays on a U15 team. Will there be a fall U15 program for trapped players?
Yes, we will offer a program for trapped 8th graders for the fall season depending on interest. The program will run from August to October and is open to players that are currently in the 8th grade that will be playing on a U15 team starting in November 2022. Questions please contact:

Academy North: Ryan Handbury |
Academy South Boys: James Thomas |
Academy South Girls: Chris Black |
Academy Bluegrass Boys: Dan Ensley  |
Academy Bluegrass Girls: Megan Adkins |

Can a team come to the club and join as a team?
Yes! The team can join the Classic Program. For more information please reach out to Michelle Okumura at

Who is in charge of hiring coaches?
If you are interested in a coaching opportunity, please fill out the following coaching form –

Program Directors:

Academy North: Ryan Handbury |
Academy South Girls: Chris Black |
Academy South Boys: James Thomas |
Academy Bluegrass Boys: Dan Ensley |
Academy Bluegrass Girls: Megan Adkins |
Premier Xenia: Brent Lewis |
Premier North: Wil Cagle |
Premier Sycamore: Ryan Handbury |
Premier Central: Michael Ratliff |
Premier South: David Shemilt |
Premier Versailles: Brandon Cummons |
Premier Lexington: Fonyam Atanga |