Photo courtesy of Duke University
By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
February 11, 2014-Kim DeCesare is taking her considerable soccer skills to New England to play for the Boston Breakers, who selected her in the National Women’s Soccer League Draft last month in Philadelphia. The 22-year-old Massapequa Park resident played two years for the Olympic Development Program (ODP) of the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) and one year on Region 1 ODP.
In the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL), Kim played from Girls-Under-10 to Girls-Under-18 with the Massapequa Power. After she and her teammates graduated from high school, the Power no longer existed so Kim then played two summers with the LIJSL’s HBC Arsenal.
“I started coaching Kimberly when she was a five-year-old girl in squirts in the Massapequa Soccer Club. I was fortunate to have her for much of her intramural seasons,” commented Massapequa Power coach Tom Daly. “I had the pleasure of watching her grow up to be a leader, a talented athlete, a driven competitor and most importantly a well-rounded young lady.”
She won one state championship with Massapequa High School and counted a game as a freshman as one of her best moments ever on a soccer field.
“I was called up from JV and played in my second high school game versus our rivals South Side,” Kim said. “We went into overtime and our coaches, Bruce Stegner and Kerry Jacobs, put me up top although I normally played defense. I scored in the first overtime and we won the game, 1-0. Scoring as a freshman in high school playing with my varsity team idols was huge for me!”
2008 was a very good year for Kim at Massapequa High School as she was named the Most Valuable Player in girls soccer in Nassau County and received the Michael Clarke Award, named after the esteemed Eastern New York Hall of Famer, as well as being honored as the Newsday Long Island Player of the Year and Gatorade Player of the Year for New York State.
The National Honor Society member used a LIJSL Scholarship to partially fund her education at Duke University. As a redshirt sophomore, she scored the first goal of the game in a 4-1 victory over Wake Forest in the NCAA Semifinals to send the Blue Devils to the final, where they lost to Stanford, 1-0.
“Kimberly became the mainstay on defense for the Massapequa Power. With sort of an old-school mind set, there was never a harder worker in practice or better teammate. She always put the team's success before her own accolades,” added Coach Daly. “She was there when someone needed a pat on the back, or even a soft kick in the butt. She’s earned everything she has achieved with her blood, sweat and heart. I have never seen anyone want something so badly, and put so much work into achieving a dream. I am thrilled for her on being drafted into the NWSL!”
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 11 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.