CBN Light­ning ready for ninth sea­son

Reg­is­tra­tion set for May 1

The Compass - - SPORTS - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

The CBN Light­ning soc­cer club is set to kick off its ninth sea­son with its spring-sum­mer ses­sions.

A par­ent in­for­ma­tion ses­sion will take place at 6:30 p.m. on May 1 at the cafe­te­ria in All Hal­lows El­e­men­tary in North River.

Reg­is­tra­tion will take place fol­low­ing the meet­ing and will con­tinue un­til 9:00 p.m.

CBN Light­ning Pres­i­dent Robert Tar­rant is very op­ti­mistic about the fu­ture of the club.

“This is the ninth sea­son for the club and we are very hum­bled by the tremen­dous sup­port we have re­ceived from par­ents, mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties, ser­vice groups and businesses in re­cent years. This sup­port has en­abled us to pro­vide a high qual­ity pro­gram that cre­ates op­por­tu­ni­ties to play soc­cer for play­ers at all skill lev­els and age cat­e­gories. We have play­ers from age three to fifty who play soc­cer at one of our fa­cil­i­ties in North River, Bay Roberts and Spa­niard’s Bay,“he said.

The Light­ning pro­gram has seen con­tin­u­ous growth in the past two years. Tar­rant con­trib­utes this to the new CSA player de­vel­op­ment model.

“This has brought about a change in how we train our coaches and ap­proach the game,” he said. “We in­tro­duced a longterm model for pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment for our coaches which will have them cer­ti­fied at the Pre B provin­cial level by the start of the 2015 sea­son.

“Some of our coaches have al­ready com­pleted the first four lev­els of this CSA pro­gram. The in­crease in cer­ti­fi­ca­tion for our coaches is pay­ing div­i­dends on the field as we see a tremen­dous im­prove­ment in the skill level of our play­ers.”

Other fac­tors

A sec­ond fac­tor that has con­trib­uted to an in­crease in num­bers is the ex­pan­sion of an All­Star pro­gram.

Any play­ers look­ing for stiffer com­pe­ti­tion can look to the Metro League sys­tem. It is a league that in­cludes teams from St. John’s, Mount Pearl, Con­cep­tion Bay South, North East Avalon, Par­adise, South­ern Shore and CBN Light­ning.

Last sea­son, the Light­ning en­tered seven teams in Metro and are an­tic­i­pat­ing be­tween eight and 10 en­trants this sea­son.

“In Metro League play last sea­son all our teams had win­ning records and had no prob­lem com­pet­ing with the larger clubs,” said Tar­rant.

In the 2014 sea­son, the as­so­ci­a­tion have iden­ti­fied coaches for the fol­low­ing teams; • Un­der-8 boys, girls; • Un­der-10 boys; • Un­der-12 boys, girls; and • Un­der-14 boys; In most of these age groups, there will have two or three teams.

Play­ers in un­der-16 and un­der-18 will par­tic­i­pate in Avalon Cup and Provin­cial mega tour­na­ments.

“CBN Light­ning has al­ways in­tro­duced new and in­no­va­tive ways to grow soc­cer in this re­gion,” said Tar­rant.

This sea­son, the club will be­gin of­fer­ing a one-week soc­cer camp in July run by a team of pro­fes­sional coaches.

Along with this, the Light­ning will host two na­tional CSA Soc­cer-Fest week­ends with the first ses­sion on May 31.

In ad­di­tion, the soc­cer field at the Wil­bur Sparkes Re­cre­ation Com­plex in Bay Roberts is ready to go in May.

This field will have light­ing in­stalled over the next two years.This will be the only soc­cer pitch in this re­gion with them.

Tar­rant is pre­dict­ing fur­ther growth in soc­cer over the next five years.

“In 2013, we had an in­crease of 33 per cent in our en­rol­ment over the pre­vi­ous year mak­ing us the fastest grow­ing club in the prov­ince,” he said. “We are an­tic­i­pat­ing an in­crease in reg­is­tra­tion again this year and ex­pect this trend to con­tinue over the next five years.”

A ten­ta­tive sched­ule has been drafted for the spring pro­gram. All ses­sions will take place at the Bay Roberts field lo­cated next to Amal­ga­mated Academy. Tues­day: • Un­der-10 boys, un­der-12 girls — 6 p.m. -7 p.m.;

• Un­der-12 boys, un­der-14 boys/girls — 7 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Thurs­day: • Un­der-4 (pre-school) — 5:30 p.m.-6:15 p.m.;

• Un­der-6 and un­der-8 (Kinder­garten-Grade 2) — 6:15 p.m.- 7 p.m.;

Sun­day

• Re­cre­ation soc­cer (un­der 14-18, adult) — 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.;

There will be two sites to run the as­so­ci­a­tion’s sum­mer pro­gram — Wil­bur Sparkes Re­cre­ation Com­plex and the Spa­niard’s Bay Field — with the sched­ule to come next month.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.cbn­light­ning.ca or Face­book.

Com­pass file photo

CBN Light­ning un­der-18 player Willy Hayes rips a ball dur­ing provin­cial play in this Com­pass file photo. The Light­ning are set to kick off its 9th sea­son this spring.

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