By Julie McDonald

Columbia Valley Youth Soccer Association

CLUB COACH  The local soccer association is pleased to name Jurgen Striegel as head coach. Photo submitted

CLUB COACH The local soccer association is pleased to name Jurgen Striegel as head coach. Photo submitted

A magical thing happens in the spring on our numerous sports fields at Mount Nelson Athletic Park and J.A. Laird. The valley folk converge onto the fields children, youth and parents all there for the love and enjoyment of soccer.

If ever you want to feel a sense of unity within our valley, arriving at a soccer practice is sure to elicit such feelings. Soccer has wide appeal. Whether it is an obsession for a child or is practised as a crossover sport (for hockey, skiing, etc.), it is an undeniable way to get in amazing shape, have fun and participate in an inexpensive team sport. With such a multitude of benefits for the kids who play, the Columbia Valley Youth Soccer Association (CVYSA) is always striving for ways to improve our programs, hoping to encourage more and more kids to join the soccer craze.

Enter Jurgen Striegel. To continue growing and improving the valleys soccer programs, the CVYSA is excited to announce that Jurgen has been named the clubs Head Coach. With an impressive past of playing Third Division (semi-pro) in Germany until the age of 31, and coaching here in the valley since 2002, Jurgen brings a wealth of soccer knowledge and experience.

In recent years he has led the now-U18 boys to provincials three times. With Jurgen at the helm, both the House and Rep soccer programs will benefit from enhanced coach mentorship, more resources, extra goalie clinics and additional training practices for

Rep players.

In the words of Jurgen, Soccer is a game that everybody can play. Boys, girls, experience or no experience its never too late to start playing the game. Jurgens expertise and eagerness to share his knowledge is sure to elevate the quality of play for our valley teams. In the spring of 2014, the CVYSA hosted its first home tournament. With 32 teams from Alberta and B.C. participating, the valley was buzzing with soccer. This year, plans for the tournament are well underway and the club hopes to host 40 teams.

Teams loved coming to the valley, and the valley is so great at hosting. Soccer clubs are already considering this a desirable tournament to attend, said club president Cheryl Maybuck.Though our precious fields are still snow-covered, its time to start thinking spring soccer. Registration for the Rep Program (ages 12 to 18) has begun with a deadline of February 15th. At $250 to register, playing soccer is excellent bang for your buck. The fees include four tournaments, shorts, bags, warm-up shirts and socks. House Soccer (ages five to 12) registration will begin soon after and is extremely reasonable at $60 for the season.

The club offers confidential assistance to families if needed. For more information, to inquire about assistance, or to get involved, please contact club president Cheryl Maybuck at 250-342-2048, or visit the clubs website at or Facebook page CV Youth Soccer.