November 2020 Newsletter

Latest Developments, October 27th 2020…

Since the media exposure of the 10-10-10 Youth Sports Rally in San Diego earlier this month, and the fact that many California youth sports teams are traveling out of state for competition, word has finally arrived on Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk that we are in a dire situation. At least now he has acknowledged that a plan for youth sports has to be developed and soon.

In the meantime we are doing everything we possibly can to keep our players fine-tuned and active, while at the same time being prepared for any outcome or news from our State and County legislators.

Some of the actions we are taking in order to be prepared for our return to play and to keep our players on the field are:

  • Attending weekly Return-to-Play meetings and bi-weekly Presidio/SDDA meetings.
  • Continuing weekly practice sessions and opening the fields on Saturday morning for coaches and teams that require more field time.
  • Securing a safe playing environment where only the players and field staff are allowed on the fields. Keep in mind that for a weekday practice it takes 8 – 10 volunteers to make this happen.
  • Coaches have partnered with our club to help alleviate parents player fees for the month of November by agreeing to have their pay deferred to the end of their contracts.
  • In the absence of parents working for the club in the snack bar and as parking attendants, we are continually trying to develop ways to fundraise within our club, like the Calendar Fund Raiser we just completed that put a lot of money back into the hands of parents.
  • We included our Recreational teams alongside our Competitive teams under lights to make sure nobody is overlooked.
  • And we are keeping our communication avenues open and getting the latest information summarized and into the hands of our players and parents quickly.

You can all rest assured that we are doing everything within our power to protect the welfare of our players and staff and when the word comes down the line that we can start playing games you can guarantee we will be ready to go.

The distinct difference between our club and others is the fact that we have our own soccer fields. Many other clubs have to rely on renting school fields for their season. Our Recreational Program is in-house and organized by us, so we can be prepared to go as soon as we get the thumbs up. We are also not a club that has to make a profit every year, so if we can break even while providing a healthy outlet to help maintain the physical and mental well-being of our players, then we are happy and feel satisfied that we have done our best to achieve this task.

If you notice any youth soccer teams playing competitive ball or scrimmaging against each other at this time at other venues around our city, then you have to understand that they are breaking protocol. If any club is seen to break protocol then they can be closed down, fined, lose their license and/or their field permits. To us breaking these rules also means a lack of safety for our players and staff, which is something we are not prepared to do.

We will always strive to provide a safe and healthy playing environment and to operate within the laws and regulations of our sport.

As always we appreciate your understanding and support during these unprecedented and challenging times.

Escondido Soccer Club Welcomes Our New Vice-President

 Last month Rob Parker vacated the position of Vice-President in order to take on his new role as Director of Competitive Soccer. Since then the board has been working diligently, searching for a suitable candidate to fill this vacant Vice-President position.

We are therefore pleased to announce that during our last general board meeting, Jose Valle was unanimously voted in as our new Vice-President. Jose and all of his children have played and his younger offspring continue to play for FC Heat. We are now looking at his older children to move into coaching our FC Heat younger boys and girls.

There are many reasons why Jose is built for this job. Firstly he has enormous experience in the game. Having been with Escondido Soccer Club since his very early days as a player, he played for one of the very first FC Heat teams. Regarded by many as a great soccer brain, he has served as a coach for FC Heat for many years. Head Coach Valle was the leader of one of our strongest older boy’s teams who played in the Coastal League around seven years ago. They achieved great results, winning many championships and also consistently showing very well in the National Cup year after year. Last year Jose and his older son Diego took over the coaching reigns of one of our younger boys teams, which also performed exceptionally well in league and tournament competitions. Jose’s older daughter Fatima, after playing many years for Rob Parker, is now coaching some of our youngest girls in FC Heat. Her contagious smile and positive approach is exactly what these girls need so early on in their soccer education. The youngest Valle’s, Santiago and Alondra are displaying extraordinary talent in our younger teams.

Secondly, Jose is a hard-working go getter. When he sees that the club is lacking in a certain department he is not shy about telling you how it is and what could and should be done to solve the problem. He is also never afraid to get his hands dirty. He will be assisting our President, Jessica Escobedo with her duties, while at the same time assisting Rob Parker and Steve Yorke in the Competitive arena and Franki Cira in our Recreational department. You will see him down at Ryan Park during all teams practice sessions.

And finally, Jose is a man of high morals and standards. He is the only coach in California to receive the Cornerstone Award (pictured) for helping the youth of Escondido. Echoing the club’s sentiment, Jose uses soccer as a conduit to teach our players’ life’s valuable lessons, helping to send them well on their way to achieving personal greatness.

Please say hi to Jose when you are down the fields and welcome him to our board. I promise you he will keep you talking about Escondido soccer until your ears burn.

FC Heat News & Information  –  November 2020

Heat traveling teams

Our Competitive teams have been practicing for over 20 weeks now, preparing for the much anticipated start to our leagues. Those sessions have included field distancing and simulated tackling which is a long stretch from full-contact. However, coaches have been very creative when putting together their lesson plans, and we have been very fortunate to have our Hall-of-Famer soccer coach John Napier send us some much needed advice on how to best use the field space and other overlooked tools within our reach.

As you may have heard many clubs are moving their tournaments out to Arizona because it is the nearest state cleared for competitive soccer. California is still the only state not cleared for full-contact competitive soccer and it will be a while before we see any tournaments in any sport in California. But we are still hoping and optimistic that we may see our San Diego leagues start soon.

At the time of writing this article we have had two teams travel and compete out of state, and we have another four teams traveling to Arizona in early November.

Unfortunately, upon returning (according to the CDC), everyone who travels have to self-isolate for two weeks. We have however made it possible for those teams to still practice in an isolated environment away from our non-traveling teams.

Arizona is loving the unexpected interest and of course their newfound wealth. While it was announced today that Arizona’s COVID cases are rising, raising concerns that they may shut the state down, one proposed tournament over there had 1000 teams apply to compete with 750 of them coming in from California. To me it only seems safe to use common sense to help stop this migration and open up our league play in San Diego.

Congratulations to Sebastian Oros and his B2005 team (pictured) who made it to the final of their tournament  –  Well done folks!

Player openings for our Competitive teams

For those players interested in playing soccer at a higher level, we have a few teams looking to add players for this year’s proposed season. These teams are already formed, registered and seeded and are practicing two to three times a week at Ryan Park. Coaches are eager to fill any vacant spots they have, so if you are interested please click the link below to see which teams are looking for extra talent. Click on the coaches name from the selected team to contact them via email.

Teams looking for players

Saturday morning practices for Heat teams

For those coaches who wish to take advantage, we have opened the fields for Saturday morning practices commencing on November 7, 2020 . We had previously planned skills clinics during this time but many coaches favored the extra practice sessions instead. We will keep you informed should we decide to move to organized skills clinics in the near future.

Recreational News –  November 2020

For the first time in many years we have been able to facilitate all of our recreational teams under lights so that they can continue to practice even when the clocks fall back. This is indeed a treat for a lot of our recreational players who have never played a sport under floodlights before.

There is also great camaraderie between coaches both from Heat and Rec, which is great to see. One of our main goals this year is to bring recreational soccer a lot closer to our competitive soccer. Usually at the end of the recreational season we organize All-Star teams to play in tournaments around the county. This is always a family favorite, but of course with the existing COVID conditions, this is another part of our program already under threat of cancelation. Nevertheless, under these circumstances and at this time of the year, it is still a great opportunity for all of our recreational players to be seen by many of our competitive coaches.

In the hope for a positive message from Governor Newsom for us to commence with games, our Director of Recreation Frank Cira is working diligently on putting together the details of our expected season.

Frank’s message to all of our Recreational families…

“Thank you for your continued support and patience, we recently received a push back date to November 11th, 2020, but of course under current circumstances nothing is guaranteed. Practices will continue until we move on to our next phase. Our staff is on standby and as soon as we are cleared to have games we will schedule them as soon as possible. Once again, thank you.”

Letter from Rob Parker, Director of Competitive

Hello Everyone,

I hope this letter finds you in good health.

Wow!! October has come and gone. The holidays are upon us, summertime is in the past and the fall is here. We will now be going from “Coach it is too hot to practice.” to “Coach it is too cold to run.” But, as we are all aware, our players are tough and they seem to work through it all.

By now in a normal season, we would be heading into the final few weeks of games. Coaches and players would be scoreboard watching, all eagerly awaiting the posted scores so they can see where their teams are in the current standings. We would also be thankful for our Heat winter attire, and proud to show the badge – thank you Tracy for all the hard work putting the gear together.

But as you all know, this is not a normal season and not much has changed in our Return-To-Play campaign. Our State, our County, and our City, including our governing bodies have not moved from our current phase. As disheartening as it is however, we continue to strive to keep our players in top form. It is certainly encouraging to see our players coming to camps and working hard with a great attitude.

We all need to stay this positive!

Thanksgiving is around the corner, which is such a wonderful time of the year to stop and think about the many blessings we have received. We are all thankful for our players and parents, for our many band of volunteers, for our coaches and our managers and for our board of directors who continue to make difficult decisions in order to keep us all moving forward. Life is tough for everyone right now, but I know first-hand that we always make our decisions based on what we feel is best for our players.

Thank you all. Stay positive, stay healthy and enjoy a Very Happy Thanksgiving.

Rob Parker

ESC Director of Competitive