February 27, 2020 (Wilmington, NC) - The Wilmington Hammerheads are excited to announce the expansion and re-naming of the Juniors Program. The Juniors Development Program (JDP) will expand to include ALL players in the club ages U8-U12, and officially replace the currently named Juniors Program.
Beginning in the fall (August 2020), all boys and girls ages U8-U12 will be a part of the Juniors Development Program. The JDP will serve as an 'umbrella' program that connects all of the players during these important developmental years. Players will be placed on skill-appropriate teams that play in local/regional leagues consistent with US Soccer’s Player Development Initiatives.
Current Juniors Program Director, Justin Moose, will expand his role to oversee the entire Juniors Development Program. Moose will now guide and lead this program allowing him to share his expertise to all of the coaches and players in these age groups, as the program works to provide a platform where players are able to consistently improve at each age.
"We looked at our U11 and U12 age groups and felt there was a 'gap' in leadership and support. Often the teams in these age groups had an isolated experience that left them disconnected from the club. Including the U11 and U12 age groups into the JDP provides these teams and coaches with strong leadership that will help with important parts of the player experience that include curriculum support, training methodology and techniques, and competition structure. All of this will lead to a clearer understanding of the youth soccer pathway for both players and parents," said Executive Director Carson Porter.
While the restructuring of the U8-U12 programming will provide more benefits in the player development process, the programs themselves will remain unchanged. The U8-U10 programming will continue to be organized with a focus on age appropriate training and our in-house local league. Players in the U11-U12 JDP (and selected U10s) will continue to participate in NCYSA Classic League (or equivalent) that will include some limited travel outside of Wilmington.
The JDP, which now includes boys and girls U8 age groups through U12 age groups will all tryout together in May (dates TBA).