Inductee Ed Cody on left with longtime coach Mike Ludin. Photo courtesy of the LIJSL.
By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
March 18, 2015-Five soccer players who grew up playing in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) were inducted in the Long Island Soccer Player Hall of Fame on Saturday night, March 7 during the 33rd Annual Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) Convention. The ceremony took place at the Huntington Hilton.
“All five of our inductees are trailblazers,” said Long Island Soccer Player Hall of Fame Founder Kevin McCrudden. “What they have done has opened doors for others who have come after them.”
Babylon’s Ed Cody joined the Huntington Boys Club (HBC) TOPSoccer Special Children’s Program in 1984 when the program was in its infancy. For three decades, he was one of the LIJSL TOPSoccer’s most consistent and giving players. He played in the Special Olympics 19 times all over New York State, winning many medals in the process. After announcing his retirement last fall, he played in the Special Olympics one last time. At the competition in Glens Falls, the stalwart defender asked to move to the forward line where he scored the goal to give HBC the gold medal.
“Ed is a team player, gives 100% all the time, cares about his teammates, especially if they do not show up for practice or games,” stated his coach for the past three decades, Mike Ludin.
Mike also described some of the other members of the HBC TOPSoccer Program. His son, Craig Ludin, has won so many gold medals in the Special Olympics that he has been inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. Sarah Calichman plays for HBC as well and her brother Dan Calichman played soccer professionally in MLS and Japan’s J-League. Plus the brother of HBC’s Jeannie Higgins, Chris Higgins, currently plays for the Vancouver Canucks. So you can understand with players like Ed, Craig, Sarah and Jeannie, HBC has some wonderful talent in the program.
The other Long Island Soccer Player Hall of Fame inductees were former pro players Alan Bodenstein, Emily Pickering Harner, Tom Lang and Michael Windischmann. Congratulations to all five!
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.