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March Newsletter 2022

Welcome to the Kings Hammer March Newsletter 2022! This edition features Tryouts Save the Date, Elite 64 Welcomes Kings Hammer Boys, ECNL Boys Continues to Add to the Best, Kings Hammer Named Club Partner, Keeper Wars Ink Announces Partnership with KH GK Union, Kings Hammer Announces Expansion to Greater Dayton Communities, Summer Camps, Little Lions, and more! If you have a player, coach, or team to be highlighted in future newsletters, please send photos and stories to info@kingshammer.com.

2022/2023 Tryout Dates Coming Soon

Tryouts for the 2022/2023 Season can begin in May and will end by June 17th. Official dates will be announced closer to the start of tryouts. Families looking to book summer vacations can begin booking on Saturday, June 18th to avoid conflicts.

If the official tryout schedule is released and you run into conflicts please communicate with your Program Director so they are aware.

Elite 64 Welcomes Kings Hammer Boys

FRISCO, TX (March 8, 2022) — The US Youth Soccer National League is excited to announce the next nine boys clubs that will compete as inaugural members of Elite 64.

Chicago FC United (IL)
Dallas Surf Soccer Club (TX)
Indiana Fire Juniors (IN)
Kings Hammer Academy (KY)
Los Angeles Soccer Club (CA)
Players Development Academy (NJ)
Real Colorado (CO)
Rush Select South (MS)
STA (NJ)

Each of these Elite 64 clubs share a collective vision and are dedicated to providing an unmatched game day experience, in addition to maintaining the highest standards, both on and off the field, to maximize the opportunities available to their players.

“We are thrilled to welcome these standout boys clubs as inaugural members of Elite 64,” said Simon Collins, USYS National League Commissioner. “We are excited to continue to work with clubs that are dedicated to doing what is best for the players, both on and off the field, and are confident Elite 64 will help these clubs offer an unrivaled experience for their top-level players. These clubs have a history of player development, and we’re confident their leaders will utilize the full developmental pathway of the National League to ensure every level of player at their club is able to compete in the right environment.”

The newly-announced elite performance tier of the National League, Elite 64 will begin play this fall and feature club-based competition for the nation’s top boys and girls players in the 13U, 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, and 18/19U age groups. The 64 clubs in each gender will be geographically positioned into eight groups of eight clubs. Teams play a 14-game league season and have access to two national showcases (alongside National League P.R.O.) and the Elite 64 national finals.

Each of the inaugural Elite 64 clubs will benefit from world-class performance analysis from ProScore and new USYS partner STATSports, which will provide Elite 64 clubs with unparalleled access to the world’s most advanced performance wearable technology. All data and analysis collected will be shared with college coaches and professional scouts — making every Elite 64 game or training session a recruitable moment.

Click here to read the full release.

ECNL Boys Continues to add the Best with Six New Clubs for 2022-23 Season

RICHMOND, VA (March 22, 2022) – ECNL Boys is excited to announce the addition of six new clubs into Club Competition for the 2022-23 season: Beach FC (VA), Chicago Magic (IL), FC Prime (FL), Kings Hammer (OH), Parkland SC (FL) and United PDX (OR). Beach FC (VA) will join the Mid-Atlantic Conference, Chicago Magic will join the Midwest Conference, FC Prime and Parkland SC will join the Florida Conference, Kings Hammer will join the Ohio Valley Conference, and United PDX will join the Northwest Conference.

“We are thrilled to be welcoming these six clubs into ECNL Boys Club Competition for the upcoming season,” said Jason Kutney, ECNL Boys Commissioner. “Each of these clubs has performed very well in a variety of different youth platforms over the past years, including three that emerged as top performers in ECNL Regional Leagues. These clubs will help ECNL Boys continue our mission to bring together the best clubs in the country, while creating opportunities for players in new locations in the country. The league and its membership have never been stronger.”

Kings Hammer
Covington, KY

Kings Hammer has a history of success in its boys program, and will be continuing that legacy in ECNL Boys this upcoming season. Drawing in the best athletes in the region, the club has significantly expanded its footprint in Ohio and Kentucky throughout the years, which will make it a premier club for the Ohio Valley Conference. The organization aims to provide soccer and educational opportunities to young players and to encourage, inspire and empower each player and coach to be able to reach the highest level possible within the game and their lives.

“Kings Hammer Soccer Club is delighted to be accepted into the ECNL Boys platform for the upcoming season,” said Paul Nicholson, Kings Hammer Technical Director. “Our goal as a club is to create a player pathway that provides the best opportunities for all our players. The addition of ECNL Boys aligns perfectly with this goal as we are now able to compete at the highest level in the country with both our boys’ and girls’ teams. We look forward to working with the league and the clubs within it to create a positive environment for everyone involved.”

Click here to view the full release.

Kings Hammer is Excited to be Named a Club Partner

The FC Cincinnati Academy Affiliate Club and Club Partner programs are in their second year in 2022 and provide both technical and commercial benefits for the local soccer community.

“It’s really important for us as a club to be connected in the soccer market in Greater Cincinnati and the Tri-State area,” said Larry Sunderland, FC Cincinnati’s Director of Player Development. “It’s crucial for us to share knowledge and ideas on soccer, everything from coaching education to player identification and development to the various opportunities the programs provide in the Tri-State area. The Affiliate Club and Club Partner programs allow us to collaborate on the best ideas in soccer in Greater Cincinnati and the growth of these programs have been fantastic.”

Affiliate Clubs and Club Partners receive technical benefits, including the ability to observe FCC Academy matches and training sessions with additional opportunities for player growth and talent identification.

Commercial benefits for Affiliates and Club Partners include external marketing from FC Cincinnati, placement on FCC’s Affiliate Club webpage or FCC’s Club Partner webpage, club jersey try-on days in TQL Stadium, merchandise, and exclusive ticket discounts, in addition to in-match marketing opportunities and special event access.

Click here to view the full release.

Keeper Wars Ink is Excited to Announce Partnership with Kings Hammer GK Union

LAKE ST. LOUIS, MO (March 25, 2022) — Keeper Wars Ink is excited to announce our partnership with Kings Hammer out of Covington, Kentucky.

“We are excited to bring our event to such a professionally ran organization such as Kings Hammer. As they look to give back to the keeper community with us we look to build a one-of-a-kind keeper platform to showcase keepers from the 2 great soccer states of Ohio and Kentucky to battle it out in our national qualifying event!
Casey Clark, Keeper Wars Ink, CEO & Co-Founder

“We are excited to partner with Keeper Wars Ink to bring a Keeper Wars event to Cincinnati this summer. Kings Hammer recently launched our GK Union under the direction of Louis Liberatore back in the fall. As we constantly seek opportunities to enhance our event offerings and think outside the box, Keeper Wars provides us an opportunity to partner with a first-class event and showcase Goalkeepers from Cincinnati/Northern KY and across the region.”
Dave McIver, Kings Hammer, Vice President of Operations/Events

“Keeper Wars Ink is the fastest-growing GK specific competition in the United States and I am thrilled the Kings Hammer GK Union can help bring a National Qualifier to the GKs of Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky! This is a great opportunity for GKs to showcase their abilities, compete head-to-head with other GKs and build friendships with other GKs. I cannot wait to see so many GKs in one place!”
Louis Liberatore, Kings Hammer, Director of Goalkeeping

Our 2022 City Tour Showcase & Tournament will be held in Wilder, KY, June 18-19, 2022
The event weekend will start with a Pre-Event Clinic on Friday night, followed by our tournament that will play on Saturday & Sunday, with all goalkeepers guaranteed 5 games over the 2 days.

Winners of each age group will be invited to our 2022 National Championship, in partnership with US Youth Soccer, in Orlando, Florida, July 22-25, 2022!

Registration for our event will open for Boys & Girls, 9U-19U on Friday, March 25, 2022.
To register and learn more about Keeper Wars Ink, please visit: www.keeperwarsink.com/2022-city-tour-kings-hammer

Kings Hammer Announces Expansion to Greater Dayton Communities

DAYTON, OH (March 28th, 2022) – Kings Hammer Soccer Club is excited to announce that it will be expanding its soccer programs to serve the greater Dayton communities. Kings Hammer will be offering the first two tiers of its development pathway – Grassroots (Little Lions & Camps) and the Premier Program in the Centerville, Dayton, and Xenia Communities.

Kings Hammer Little Lions (Ages u4-u8) is a program offered for new and beginner players as an introduction to the game of soccer. Using soccer as a tool to help kids reach various physical and cognitive development milestones, the program also promotes self-confidence and fosters the love of the game. Led by KH staff, each session is held at club hosted sites, pre-schools, daycares, after school programs and club hosted sites.

The Kings Hammer Premier Program (Ages u8-u19) is designed to provide players with the opportunity to train and prepare for the journey to the Kings Hammer Academy Program. The Premier Program also 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. This program will be offered at home sites in the Centerville, Dayton, and Xenia communities.

“Kings Hammer is thrilled to be expanding its programs to the greater Dayton communities. As an organization, Kings Hammer has received a lot of interest over the last several years in expanding its services to the greater Dayton area. Our goal is to work with some of the local clubs to create healthy environments to improve the game across the region.” – Kevin McCloskey, Kings Hammer COO.

“I am looking forward to expanding our Grassroots footprint to include the greater Dayton area. The newest and youngest participants in the game are often forgotten, so I’m excited to bring our Little Lions program, which exposes these players to motor, cognitive, and social-emotional skills, as well as our club values, to the area!” – Michelle Okumura, Kings Hammer Grassroots Executive.

“I am excited for Kings Hammer to be able to offer our Premier Program in the Dayton area. We have created an exciting player pathway for u8s though u12s that focuses on creating an environment where players are having fun, learning to compete, learning to cooperate, and are being exposed to our Club’s core values and principles of play. Thrilled to get started!” Michael Ratliff, Kings Hammer Premier Executive.

Grassroots registrations for Summer and Fall Little Lions and Camps will be released later this spring for the Dayton area.

Premier Program information on locations, tryout options and upcoming partnerships will be released shortly.

For more information regarding the Dayton expansion or for future interest, please contact Ryan Handbury, Kings Hammer Dayton Project Manager – Ryan@kingshammer.com

Summer Camps

Looking for an opportunity to stay sharp this Summer?

Register today for the Kings Hammer Summer Camp Series! Camps will be offered at our North, Sycamore, Central, South, and Bluegrass locations for boys and girls U4-U15 beginning June 20th and running through July 28th.

For more information on Summer Camps and to register click here.

Spring Little Lions

Registration is still open for the 2022 Spring Little Lions at our South and Bluegrass locations! The program will be offered for boys and girls U4(2018)-U8(2014).

Our Little Lions Program is a player-centered program that focuses on technical fundamentals, age-appropriate fitness, and fun! Each week players will participate in 1 training session, led by Kings Hammer Youth Directors and staff. Training sessions will focus on technical skill development and small-sided games.

Click the links below for more information and to register:

Questions? Contact the Kings Hammer Grassroots Director Michelle Okumura at michelle@kingshammer.com.

March Education: Talking Respect & Sportsmanship

In addition to sending out curriculum reminders to the coaches for the upcoming month of practices, our Technical Director Paul Nicholson asked coaches to begin exploring the club’s VALUES with their teams.  As a reminder for all of us, here are the club’s VALUES: 

  • Leadership – Empower yourself and others to enjoy success on and off the pitch. 
  • Respect – Treat each person with dignity and courtesy. 
  • Creativity – Think outside the box with innovation and imagination.  
  • Integrity - Do the right thing. Follow the golden rule. 
  • Passion – Energize, engage, and inspire yourself and others.

These can be found on our website, in our program descriptions, and in other media.  They are core to our club mission- to positively impact the development of youth in our community by providing soccer and educational opportunities to young players of all ages and playing abilities and to create a lifelong passion for the sport of soccer. 

Over the next couple of weeks, our coaches will receive several Value Activities to utilize with their teams to explore the value of RESPECT.  Here is the first: 

Respect Activity #1 

Coaches have been asked to spend a few minutes before or after practice and ask them the following questions: 

  • What comes to mind when you hear the word respect? 
  • What are some ways you can show respect with/for the following? 
  • Teammates, Opponents, Coaches, Parents, Referees, Facilities 

Click here to read the full article.

Kings Hammer Wraps Up March Event Series

Our Kings Hammer Event Series was busy the month of March hosting our Turf Classic and Spring Thaw events. Unfortunately, Mother Nature was not on our side for the Boys Turf Classic weekend as we had to cancel the event due to a snowstorm that decided to bring 2-3 inches of snow the Friday night of the event. However, we were able to host 2 two great weekends of the Spring Thaw and Girls Turf Classic. Over the two weekends we hosted over 480 teams and 800 games from 90 clubs spanning across 20 states at turf facilities across Cincinnati and Northern Ky. It was a great kick off to the spring season for teams participating with highly competitive matches in U9-19 boys and girls age groups. Thank you to all the teams, coaches, parents, referees, and our event staff for making these events a great success. Special thank you to our event sponsors: Nike, Trophy Awards, PYB Sports, and Beacon Orthopaedics.

Now we turn our attention to April and May which will see us host 1,200 teams from all across the country and Canada for our Triple Crown Cup (April 9-10 in Versailles, KY), Nike Blue Chip Showcase (April 22-24 and April 29-May 1 in Cincinnati, OH), and Crown Challenge (May 13-15 in Cincinnati, OH).

For our Blue Chip Showcase and Crown Challenge we are in need of many volunteers to make these events run smoothly. We rely on Kings Hammer families to volunteer for our local events to help make them so successful. Please click the links below to volunteer.

Women’s Blue Chip Showcase (April 22-24):
Voice of America Park – Click here to sign up now!
Warren County Sports Park – Click here to sign up now!
Men’s Blue Chip Showcase (April 29-May 1):
Voice of America Park – Click here to sign up now!
Warren County Sports Park – Click here to sign up now!
Crown Challenge (May 14-15):
Voice of America Park – Click here to sign up now!

Warren County Sports Park – Click here to sign up now!

We are looking forward to a wrapping up our Spring Event Series in April and May!

GK Union Save of the Month

Did you make an incredible save or a game-saving block?

We want to see them!

Post your best saves in the Kings Hammer GK Union Facebook group or share on Twitter using the hashtag #KingsHammer. Be sure to share throughout the spring season and YOU could be selected for our Kings Hammer Save of the Month! The March GK Union Save of the Month winner will be announced on Friday, April 8th. In order to be considered please submit your save by midnight night 3/30. GK Save of the Month winners will be announced the Friday of the first full week of the following month.

Kings Hammer Fanwear

New Kings Hammer fanwear is available now on the Kings Hammer Online Shop!

Click here to check out the Kings Hammer Online Shop now!

 

Cincinnati Zoo & Newport Aquarium Discount Tickets

Kings Hammer has teamed up with the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden and the Newport Aquarium to offer discount tickets to Kings Hammer families this holiday season!

Follow the steps below to access your discounts tickets today!

Kings Hammer is looking for Referees!

We are always looking to grow and improve our referee pool. We would love for YOU to become a referee! We are in need of more referees across the area for league games and also need some additional referees for our upcoming events.

Becoming a referee is even EASIER now with the majority of the instruction completed online. In Ohio, you are required to be in person for the on-field session in addition to the online pre-course work. Kentucky Youth Soccer is continuing to have the on-field session via ZOOM and hopes this flexibility will enable you to consider becoming a referee.

Being a referee is among the best part-time jobs anyone can have as you essentially set your hours and can easily make in excess of $20/hr. Please consider signing up today.

Details on how to sign up can be found here. In addition to the course fee of $65, there is a $30 background check for anyone over the age of 18. If you live in KY, you will follow the links to register in KY. If you live in OH, you can follow the links to register in OH.

For more information on local field interest for league games to ref click here!

Please direct any questions on this or any referee matter to Julie Hegerty at refschedulerjulie@gmail.com

Past Newsletters

 

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 (michelle@kingshammer.com) 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 | ryan@kingshammer.com
Academy South Boys: James Thomas | james@kingshammer.com
Academy South Girls: Chris Black | chris@kingshammer.com
Academy Bluegrass Boys: Dan Ensley  | dan@kingshammer.com
Academy Bluegrass Girls: Megan Adkins | megan@kingshammer.com

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 michelle@kingshammer.com.

Who is in charge of hiring coaches?
If you are interested in a coaching opportunity, please fill out the following coaching form – https://kingshammer.com/interested-in-coaching/

Program Directors:

Academy North: Ryan Handbury | ryan@kingshammer.com
Academy South Girls: Chris Black | chris@kingshammer.com
Academy South Boys: James Thomas | james@kingshammer.com
Academy Bluegrass Boys: Dan Ensley | dan@kingshammer.com
Academy Bluegrass Girls: Megan Adkins | megan@kingshammer.com
Premier Xenia: Brent Lewis | brent@kingshammer.com
Premier North: Wil Cagle | wil@kingshammer.com
Premier Sycamore: Ryan Handbury | ryan@kingshammer.com
Premier Central: Michael Ratliff | michaelr@kingshammer.com
Premier South: David Shemilt | dshemilt@kingshammer.com
Premier Versailles: Brandon Cummons | brandon@kingshammer.com
Premier Lexington: Fonyam Atanga | fonyam@kignshammer.com