World Cup was so last summer. But soccer fever will be in Palm Coast beginning Saturday, April 9, at Wadsworth Park, off State Road 100.
After a successful inaugural season in February, the Beaches Adult Soccer League will begin play of the spring 7-on-7 league this weekend.
Last season there were four teams, but Bryan Meyer, league director, expects at least six teams this season — maybe more.
I played soccer with Meyer at Flagler Palm Coast High School, and he’s hoping to expand into Palm Coast even more.
The season will last about nine weeks, with each team guaranteed at least eight games. The top four teams will play in the semifinals, with the winners facing off in a championship.
Meyer began working with the league when he was 18. At the time, he remembers, there was one field and about 25 teams. It’s grown exponentially since.
“It was a job for gas money, and it just evolved from that,” Meyer says. “I want to grow the league into something that will last for a long time.”
When I used to live in Jacksonville, I played in the Beaches league. It’s well-organized and definitely worth the money. But when I came home over summer, I would have to drive an hour up to Jacksonville to keep playing. That’s not the case any longer.
Thanks to Meyer, there’s an organized league right here in Palm Coast.
The nonprofit league comprises nearly 3,000 soccer players over the age of 18 and more than 175 teams. According to Meyer, it’s the largest organized league in Florida and the third-largest in the U.S.
Games in the 7-v-7 format are played on smaller fields with smaller goals. There’s one referee, no slide tackling, kick-ins instead of throw-ins, and there still are yellow and red cards. Cost is $70 and covers the league’s insurance plan.
If you’re interested in starting a team or joining a team, contact Bryan Meyer at 904-813-8480 or via email at [email protected].
Go to www.basl.com for more information.
Contact Andrew O’Brien at [email protected] observer.com.