The Wilmington Hammerheads and Kickoff Soccer Academy (KOSA) led by China Maja are excited to announce a partnership that will provide a clear player pathway and scouting process for talented and ambitious boys and girls youth soccer players in Myrtle Beach.
This pathway begins for young players in Myrtle Beach with China Maja working with individual players and overseeing his club, KOSA. For those select players who are excelling locally the pathway will continue in Wilmington with the Hammerheads who are members of the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL), widely accepted as the highest level of youth soccer in the country.
“It is no secret that when it is appropriate, we want to be a part of a talented Myrtle Beach player’s youth soccer experience,” said Executive Director, Carson Porter. “Myrtle Beach players have strengthened our teams, and our club has been able to give Myrtle Beach players opportunities that, at no fault of anyone involved, just aren’t available in the Myrtle Beach community. Most of these opportunities are focused on talented player pools in all age groups, USSF ‘A’ Licensed coaches and directors leading the club, and the club’s membership in the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) – the country’s top youth soccer league. This ECNL membership and the clubs that we are competing with create a healthy competitieve environment in which we are being constantly challenged and pushed to improve. As a result of all of these qualities, players are challenged for improvement by great coaches in a talented and fun environment,” said Porter.
The partnership begins and is completely centered on ‘doing what is best for the individual player’. Players don’t have to play for a certain club, or be a certain age to be a part of this programming. On-going dialogue throughout the year will occur between the two leadership teams. Training sessions, friendly games, and tournament support will all be part of the partnership, but ultimately it is focused on what is best for the players in the Myrtle Beach community.
“In China we have a passionate coach who cares deeply about the players he works with and has his priorities in place regarding how we can make such a partnership work. There are no hard rules to our work together, only a goal of improving the soccer experience for the individual player as well as supporting and improving the Myrtle Beach soccer community.”
“Player development is and always has been the key foundation to every player’s success. Focusing on player development is what this partnership is all about. We believe, iron sharpens iron, therefore, to compete at the highest level possible, training and competing with the best, nationally, is what our players deserves. This partnership will ensure players in our community will have the ECNL platform to compete among the BEST! There is a vast talent within our community and our goal is and always has been to harness that talent and help develop these young talented players to be able to compete in college and thereafter. We are extremely excited and looking forward to working with Carson and his team in this quest of player development. We want to invite all players within our community to explore this opportunity and cone join us!”
This announcement also comes as the Wilmington Hammerheads are launching the new Boys ECNL fall SuperCup program for players ages 15-19. This is relevant for South Carolina players who play for the Hammerheads because it provides full-time programming for ECNL players in the fall season - something that was not available in the past due to the fall North Carolina high school soccer season. This fall gap in programming left Hammerhead high school aged boys’ players from South Carolina with a gap in Hammerheads programming. The SuperCup allows SC/Myrtle Beach players who are a part of the high school ages of the Hammerheads ECNL program to play full-time with the Hammerheads without a need for additional programming.