Volume 2 October 2018

Lake Forest Soccer Association


As we wrap up the fall season I think it’s worth taking a moment to reflect on what makes LFSA different from other soccer clubs. For me, the answer is simple: It’s the coaches. It’s their commitment to our children, to each other, to this club & to the game of soccer. So, with that said, this issue of News from the Pitch is dedicated to them.

This fall I have seen our amazing coaches in action and I know you have, too. I have seen their passion for growing our children as players, as teammates, and as human beings. I am constantly amazed by the patience they show towards 5,6,7 year old players that are just learning the basics of a very complicated game. Many of these young players can’t even tie their own cleats but they are learning shape, space and foot skills!

I truly believe that it takes a multitude of voices and role models to grow confident, competent kids. Just like school teachers, our coaches play a huge role in challenging our kids to do things they did not think possible, to be their best selves.

I hope you saw growth in your child this season and I encourage you to trust that it’s a combination of small steps on the path to learning the world’s greatest game. Hopefully your child loves the game even more now than they did 10 weeks ago and is eagerly awaiting the start of winter soccer on the turf!

Meredith Gauthier
LFSA Board President
"Coaching is taking a player where they can't take themself."
Our Professional Coaches . . .
  • Possess a deep knowledge of the game
  • Have played at a high level (professionally, college, club)
  • Have coaching licenses (State or National)
  • Are able to demonstrate skills
  • Have coached at a variety of levels (club, HS, ODP, College, USSF staff)
  • Possess a genuine love of the game and the desire to pass that on
  • Understand systems of play and the qualities needed for each position within the system

LFSA is committed to the principles of Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) and recognizes that a win-at-all cost approach is counterproductive for young athletes.
What is your favorite thing about coaching for LFSA?
Oktay Akgun
Director of Coaching
Oktay is originally from Golcuk, Turkey, where he grew up playing soccer, eventually playing at the semi-professional level. He moved to the United States 30 years ago and has been coaching for LFSA for 22 years. Oktay and his wife Gina have lived in Lake Bluff and Lake Forest for a good part of the past 20 years. He took over as the Director of Coaching at LFSA 2 years after joining the club and has been running it ever since. His passion for soccer and commitment to player development is what drives the success of LFSA. He has been instrumental in creating a quality competitive club in our small community. He is active in the larger local, regional and national soccer community and is also involved in scouting and training for the US Soccer Federation. He is the Director of Coaching for LFSA and 60 United (our partner program with Vernon Hills Soccer Club for U13 & above). He holds a USSF (United States Soccer Federation) A license and a USSF National Youth license. He has a number of other accolades under his belt, including:

  • 2006 Illinois Girls Coach of the Year
  • Former ODP (Olympic Development Program) state and regional head coach
  • Winning Teams: 5 times state championship, 1 regional finalist, 1 regional semi-finalist, 2 times MRL (Midwest Regional League) first division champions

"Developing high level players and teams and having the opportunity to bring them to the next level."
Coach Oktay Akgun, 22 years with LFSA

Can Gungoren
Assistant Director of Coaching, Boys cangungoren@yahoo.com
Can is originally from Turkey where he played soccer for 13 years, all the way through the college level. He graduated from Ankara University, Physical Education and Sports with a major in soccer. Can is a passionate and dynamic soccer coach who has been coaching for LFSA for over 10 years. This season Can is coaching both LFSA U8 Boys teams, the LFSA U9 Boys team and the 60 United Girls U13 Select team. Can also runs the LFSA Young Scouts program for 5 and 6 year olds. He holds a USSF C License.

"Coaching does not feel like work, I am lucky to do what I do. I love to see the kids begin to apply what they have learned at each practice into the games and to see the players develop over time, putting together what they have learned from each coach at each level. It’s like creating a building where each level builds upon another."
Coach Can Gungoren, 11 years with LFSA

Ty Stuckslager
Assistant Director of Coaching, Girls  ty.stuckslager@lfcds.org
Ty Stuckslager played soccer at the Division 1 level and then professionally. He received his BS degree in Elementary Education from Western Michigan University and his MS degree in Curriculum and Design from National Louis University. He is currently a middle school math teacher and Math Department Chair at Lake Forest Country Day School. In addtion to his role as Assistant Director of Coaching at LFSA, he currently coaches the GU14 Select team for 60 United. Ty has been the Head Lake Forest High School Girls Varsity coach since 1994 and is the Varsity Boys Assistant coach at LFHS. Ty is a former Illinois ODP coach and holds a USSF national license. 

"I love coaching in the community I live in and developing a love for soccer. Watching the kids progress from Young Scouts where their jersey is down to their knees through HS/college where they demonstrate everything they learned from all the coaches they have had before."
Coach Ty Stuckslager, 20+ years with LFSA

Susie Kullby
LFSA Coach
Known affectionately as Coach K, Susie Kullby played 3 years of varsity soccer at New Trier before playing her college soccer at Xavier University in Cincinnati. Her coaching career began straight out of college with Trevians, her childhood club, as well as at Lake Forest High School from 1993-1997. During that time, she earned a USSF National C license. Susie has played in co-ed and women's leagues and been an active soccer fan and coach the majority of her life. Her husband, Kevin, and she raised their kids playing for LFSA, and both went on to Division I athletic programs. She approaches teaching the game the same way she teaches her students at Deer Path Middle School, which is by inspiring an enjoyment and passion for the game with a clear understanding for what the game demands from a player and her teammates. 

"The kids! Love them! I love growing this sport for the families of Lake Forest."
Coach Susie Kullby, 12 years with LFSA
Pedro Beretta
LFSA Coach
Pedro is originally from Peru where he developed a passion for soccer as a little boy. His first team was “Tito Drago”, a club that was dedicated to development of young soccer players, playing the best tournaments in Peru. Throughout his teens he was invited to play for a number of professional & semi-professional teams including “Sport Boys” & “La Republicana”. Pedro moved from Lima to the US in 2002 & has continued playing competitive soccer in leagues such as as “Metropolitan”, “CLASA”, “Hispano League” and “National League” as well as coaching young soccer players.  Pedro & his wife Lisa have 2 children, Isabella (10) & Alessandro (5). Pedro joined the LFSA coaching staff in 2015 & has been a great addition. He brings patience, kindness, great skill & a big smile to the club. Pedro is currently coaching the girls U10, girls U11, boys U10 & boys U11 teams as well as assisting with the Young Scouts program. He holds a IYSA-USSF D License.

"I like working with the kids and seeing the results. Watching how they grow as players and most of all seeing them have a good time enjoying the sport."
Coach Pedro Beretta, 3.5 years with LFSA

Steve Douglass
Goalie Coach
Steve has been teaching and coaching since 2003. Growing up as a goalkeeper in St. Louis following his older brother's footsteps playing at Wheaton College (IL) he didn't lose a game until the end of his Junior year- a 66 game unbeaten streak that is still a National record for all levels, including a National Championship in 1997. A focus on personalizing goalkeeper training has been a passion ever since. Steve has coached the goalkeepers at Lake Forest College as well as Lake Forest High School, while coaching the LFHS Boys Sophomores and serving as the LFHS Girls Varsity Assistant Coach.

"My favorite part is investing in great kids who then go on to join our High School teams with skills and understanding that are well beyond the other players."
Coach Steve Douglass, 4 years with LFSA
Players: Be sure to ask your coach why they like soccer.
U8 Curriculum
Dribbling properly
Basic Coerver Ball Skills
Proper shooting technique
1v1 in attack
Staying in team shape offensively & defensively
U9 Curriculum
All U8 Skills
Coerver Ball Skills
Combination play-
Give and go
Playing balls behind
the defense
Introducing the
art of passing
Building out of the back
U10 Curriculum
All U8 & U9 Skills
Combination plays-
Give and go, overlaps
Playing balls behind the defense-through balls
Increased variety of
passing techniques
Receiving the ball
with both feet
U11 & U12 Curriculum
All U8, U9 & U10 Skills
Introduce zonal defending
High pressure/low pressure defending
Receiving balls out of the air
Receiving and turning
Supporting runs without the ball
Crossing and finishing
More Combination plays-
Three players
Heading (U12 only)
What is one thing you've learned about soccer this fall?
U8 & U9 BOYS
Dribble and switch direction of the ball & accelerate. ~Luca
Making moves like the scissors. ~ Jack
To do the scissor move & juggling. ~ Leo
Keep on moving. ~Charlie
To curve the ball. ~Liam
How to volley. ~James
How to juggle off my toes. ~ Michael
How to play midfield and how to shoot the ball at the goal better. ~Gigi
I've learned about juggling. ~Emma
When shooting I have to open up my foot! ~Kami
I learned to land on my kicking foot when I shoot. ~Elise
To not dribble into each other. ~Ruby
How to dribble with my left. ~Aaron
To pass the ball more. ~Dante
To fake like you are kicking and use your outside part to take it behind the defender. ~Charlie
How to be a better goalie. ~Kevin
Es un bonito deporte. ~ David
To work as a team. ~Marissa
How to shoot better with my non-dominant foot. ~Camilla
How to chest trap and how to volley. ~Carolyn
To turn your hips well! ~Maddie
Don't get too cocky. ~Giada
There is always something to improve on. ~ Emerson
On a bigger field you need to pass the ball more. ~Andrew
I learned how to do a through pass. ~Henry
Passing, ball doesn't always have to go forward, but finding open teammates to move the ball. ~Bo
That your first touch is key. ~Matteo
To pass and take more shots. ~Daniel
In each newsletter we highlight a team or two with photos submitted by the parents or team managers.
Young Scouts provides a dynamic soccer experience for our youngest players, ages 5 and 6.

Not even hail could stop the U8 Blue team as they took on the undefeated Park Ridge club, ending with the 5-4 win!

The team is currently tied for first place with a 5-1-1 record. On October 20th the boys were playing in the snow and won 7-3. Three different players scored the goals in that game.

The girls are having a strong season with 4 regular season wins and 3 losses thus far. They also won three tournament games. The best part is, win or lose they always come off the field smiling!

These girls have moved up 2 divisions since last Fall and are rising to the challenge of much stiffer competition. They had a dramatic and much deserved win last week with 2 beautiful goals from outside the 18!

These videos are likely best suited to our older U10 & U11 players, who are interested in this type of learning. The defending one might also be great for parents who want to learn more about the game.
Viewers Guide to Where & When to Watch
Watching the game is a great tool. You can understand the tactical side of the game when you see the field from a high angle. You notice what players do in certain situations. The announcers tend to also explain things and use the same vocabulary as the coaches. Even if it is just the highlights, like on Premier League Goal Zone (NBCSN).

  • Sunday, October 28th-10:15 am on BEIN Sports La Liga-“El Classico”-Barcelona hosts Real Madrid

  • Sunday, October 28th-3:30 pm on Fox Sports 1 MLS-1st vs 2nd-Sporting KC hosts Los Angeles FC

  • Wednesday, October 31st-TBA MLS Playoffs begin

  • Saturday, November 3rd-12:30 on NBC Premier League-4th vs 2nd -Arsenal hosts Liverpool

  • Wednesday, November 7th- 11:55 on TNT Champions League-CSKA Moscow hosts Roma

  • Sunday, November 11th -11:30 on Fox Sports Bundesliga-1st vs 4th-Dortmund host Bayern Munich

  • Sunday, November 11th-10:30 on NBCSN Premier League-“Manchester Derby”-Man. City hosts Man. United
Please NOTE: Dates and Times may change.
Lake Forest Soccer Association | soccer@lfsa.org | lfsa.org