By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
October 22, 2013-Just after former Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) Olympic Development Program graduate Allie Long won the inaugural National Women’s Soccer League championship with the Portland Thorns, another of our former ODP players, Amanda DaCosta, won the Women’s Super League championship in England with Liverpool Football Club.
Liverpool finished with a record of 12 wins, two losses and no ties to claim the title. Amanda started every game as an attacking midfielder, dishing out 12 assists during the course of the season. On May 7, she scored the first two goals in an emphatic 4-0 victory away at Emirates Stadium against Arsenal, the defending champions.
"Winning the championship feels amazing. It’s such a relief when everything you’ve worked so hard for pays off," Amanda commented. "Moving to England was already made worth it by the friendships that I've made and the experiences that I had, but winning the championship validates my decision to move across the pond. It was a storybook season and I am so grateful that my team was able to win such a prestigious championship as well as qualify for the Champions League."
In Eastern New York, she played ODP from 2000 to 2005, using it as a springboard to playing Region 1 ODP during that same time and representing the United States internationally. In club soccer, Amanda started playing for the Somers Strikers, then competed for the Monroe United Magic, both affiliated with the East Hudson Youth Soccer League. Now 24 years old, she decided as a young girl that she wanted to play professionally after watching Mia Hamm on the US Women’s National Team.
"I started off playing for a local club team when I was very young. The practice field was just down the road from my house in Somers and we were called the Somers Strikers. My Dad was my coach from a young age, and when it was time to move on, I sought out other, more competitive, options," Amanda said. "I ended up switching clubs when I was maybe 14 and made the drive to Monroe where I played with the Monroe Magic. It wasn’t nearly as convenient for my parents and I, about an hour drive to training, but it was well worth it."
Amanda played varsity soccer for five years at Somers High School, earning All-Section and All-League honors four times, while receiving league MVP accolades twice during her junior and senior years. She led the Tuskers to the league championship four times.
It was then on to enrolling at Florida State University financed through an athletic scholarship. She continued on the honor roll and was a four-year starter in Tallahassee, receiving four All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors, the most in Seminoles’ history. Her favorite memory on the soccer field was scoring the game-winning goal as a freshman against Notre Dame to lead FSU to the national championship game.
Amanda will soon be returning to New York.
"I have to report back to Liverpool in the beginning of January for preseason, so it is important that I am doing what I can in the off-season to take care of my body and stay fit," she stated.
With 123,843 youth soccer players––68,587 boys and 55,256 girls––and more than 25,000 volunteers, the non-profit Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) stretches from Montauk Point, Long Island to the Canadian border. Members are affiliated with 12 leagues throughout the association, which covers the entire state of New York east of Route 81. ENYYSA exists to promote and enhance the game of soccer for children and teenagers between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, and to encourage the healthy development of youth players, coaches, referees and administrators. All levels of soccer are offered––from intramural, travel team and premier players as well as Special Children. No child who wants to play soccer is turned away. ENYYSA is a proud member of the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer Association. For more information, please log on to http://www.enysoccer.com/, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.