By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
July 19, 2017-The East Hudson Youth Soccer League (EHYSL) hosts the largest awards dinner for teams annually in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA). The EHYSL Dinner of Champions has become a July tradition that extends back almost to the league’s founding four decades ago.
44 division champion teams and four scholarship recipients were honored on July 11 and 12 at Anthony’s Pier 9 in New Windsor. A crowd of nearly 1,400 attended over the two nights. Present on July 12 was New York City FC defender Maxime Chanot, who gracefully posed for photos with seemingly every player at the dinner.
From left to right: EHYSL Board Member Bill Brown, EHYSL Past President Ken Gulmi, NYCFC defender Maxime Chanot, EHYSL First Vice President Jim Eleftherion, EHYSL President Jim Purdy
“I don’t know of anybody in soccer who holds a dinner as large as this one to honor their champions,” commented EHYSL President Jim Purdy. “We thank and honor our coaches and volunteers whose patience, direction and soccer expertise allow our children to enjoy this great game. We also want to recognize and especially thank the parents who write the checks, do the chauffeuring, nurse the bumps and bruises and cheer on the sidelines, no matter the weather.”
The coaches of the 44 champion teams discussed their squad and introduced the players. A common theme for many of the squads is the players were unhappy with how they had done the previous season so the kids worked really hard and put together a championship season. Special kudos to the Boys-Under-14 Liberty Red Devils, who went from 0-10-0 to 10-0-0 in Division 4.
The Boys-Under-16 Division 2 Dover Terminators, who have won three consecutive division titles
All four scholarship winners decided to continue their education at colleges in New York State. The Michael Goldberg Memorial Scholarship Award recipients are Linzy Dineen (Syracuse University) and Alexa Franceschi (Mount Saint Mary College). Michael was a 15-year-old boy playing in the EHYSL for the Chappaqua Soccer Club when he died of leukemia and his family started the scholarship to honor his fulfilling yet brief life.
The Dan Herbst Memorial Scholarship Award winners are Birch Lazo-Murphy (Syracuse University) and Emily Mildner (Utica College). The scholarship namesake also died from leukemia, in 2001. Dan was a longtime soccer journalist and author, past president of the Yorktown Soccer Club and in his first term as EHYSL President when he passed away at age 48.
“These four scholarship winners exhibited excellence not only on the soccer field but in the classroom and in their communities as well,” concluded President Purdy.
Two Division 1 champion teams from Warwick: Boys-Under-12 Warwick Revolution and Girls-Under-12 Warwick Wildcatz.
The photos from both nights are linked here.
With over 100,000 youth soccer players––both boys and 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 Children With Special Needs. 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 onto http://www.enysoccer.com/, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.