Mercer Island FC Newsletter
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 September 2017  

Fall Recreational Season kicks off with EYSA Jamboree on Labor Day weekendRecreationalJamboree
3rd Annual All-EYSA Pre-season event brings together U8-12 teams from across the Association

For years, Mercer Island FC held a pre-season jamboree  at the end of the  summer for our U8-12 Recreational teams. It was a chance to bring new U8 and 9 teams and coaches together and for U10-12 teams to get reacquainted before the start of the fall season.

Three years ago, the our sister clubs of the Eastside Youth Soccer Association (EYSA) asked if they could participate. So MIFC expanded the jamboree to include all interested U8-12 teams from the Bellevue, Lake Hills, Newport Hills and Issaquah soccer clubs. 

This year, 56 teams participated in games at South Mercer Playfields, Homestead Field and Robbinswood Park in Bellevue. The decision was made to hold the jamboree on Labor Day weekend this year as several of the local school districts had started school during the last week of August. The thinking was that many families would be in town for the weekend. MIFC President Scott Barbara said "It's always a tough decision as to when to schedule the jamboree. Do we do it the weekend before Labor Day when many families may be on their final summer travel or do we schedule it for the 3 day weekend when others may get one last trip in?"

Not only was the jamboree a chance for  the  players to get some game
experience, but MIFC VP of Referees
Ken Robertson sees it as an important opportunity for new youth referees, many  who have just comple ted their referee certification course. "We encourage the new 13-16 year -old referees to sign up for several  matches at the jamboree", Robertson said "and we assign an experienced adult referee mentor to each match so the new  referees have someone watching them to give feedback and suggestions."

Congratulations to all the teams that participated...

MIFC Select Teams have Summer Tournament Success 
B02 Heat and B03 Arsenal finish off summer in tournament
fin alsTournamentSuccess

MIFC B02 Heat - the boys won their group at the August 18-20 Starfire Xtreme Cup with a 2-0-1 record and went on to the final vs Washington Rush '02. The championship match was hard fought and ended tied 1-1 after full time. The game then went to penalties. The Heat converted their first 4 kicks. The Heat's goalkeeper, Michael Ivanov, saved two of Rush's first 4 kicks to secure the tournament win. Coach Greg Snyder - "It was a long weekend with tough matches against quality competition. The boys stayed focused and really brought their "A" game to the championship match. I was really proud of their effort to bring home the title."

MIFC BO3 Arsenal - after starting off the weekend of play with a defeat Friday night, MIFC B03 Arsenal stormed back with 2 crucial victories on Saturday to make the Sunday Finals of the River Jam Challenge tournament held August 25-27 in Puyallup, WA.   Despite a valiant effort, the team eventually succumbed to the eventual champions, Washington Rush '03.  Coach Ken DuffiĆ©  - "I asked a lot of the players, and they responded with everything they had.  They should be very proud of the effort they put in to make the championship match in a tough, competitive tournament."

Coaches, managers and players, we'd love to share your stories and soccer anecdotes in upcoming newsletters. Send an email to  with your story!
Mercer Island High School Girls Soccer Underway 
Program welcomes new Head Coach James Valles

The Islander girls soccer team is off to a hot start with season opening wins against Arlington, Liberty and Sammamish high schools. The team worked hard in their preseason workouts and are hoping to improve on their 2nd place finish in the 2016 KingCo tournament and earn a berth to state. We're proud that  of the 20 girls on the current MIHS varsity roster, 11 are MIFC select players. An even greater percentage of MIFC players are on the JV and JVC teams.  And one of the players on a MIFC Recreational team is on the JV team. MIFC's commitment to getting players ready for the high school program is really working. 

Here is the announcement by the program of new Head Coach James Valles
     We are excited to announce that James Valles has accepted the position of Head Coach of the MIHS Girls Soccer program and Varsity team. Coach Valles has been coaching soccer in the greater Seattle area since 2000.  James' club coaching resume includes teams at Evergreen, Northwest Nationals and Seattle United. James has coached high school soccer at Lakeside, Jackson High School in Everett and Lindbergh High School in Renton.
     Coach Valles was voted Coach of the Year in the Seamount League in 2012 and led the Lindbergh High School Girls soccer team in back to back Seamount AA/AAA league titles. James holds an NSCAA National Diploma as well as a USSF D National coaching license.
     Coach Valles coaching philosophy can best be summed up: "The soccer experience must be worth the dedication, effort and time that all players devote to the game".
Welcome Coach Valles!

2017 MIHS Girls Home Schedule - 
Tue 9/19 - Bellevue*
Thu 9/21 - Interlake
Mon 9/25 - Juanita
Tue 10/3 - Lake Washington
Tue 10/10 - Sammamish
Tue 10/24 - Redmond
* - All games start at 7:30
For league standings and schedule updates, go to the Kingco 3A Athletics website

Want to keep up on the Islander boys as they make their run towards the state tournament? Follow them on their  booster club web page  or on their  Facebook page
Some Closing Thoughts for Parents...ThoughtsforParents

To help you prepare for your role in the season to come, Michael Langlois, author of "How Well Do You Communicate? A Guide to Better Communication with Players and Parents for Youth Soccer Coaches" and a frequent contributor to, offers a reminder of little things we, as parents and team supporters watching from the sidelines can do to contribute to successful season. Click here to read his 6 suggestions for a successful soccer season

Here's a video titled "Attitudes are Contagious" produced by the Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association which contains great examples of how the players view their parent's contributions from the sidelines...
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