By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
June 4, 2019-The Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) is very pleased to announce that Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) Office Manager Laura Kozik is being honored as our Personality of the Month for June. Laura’s co-worker Stephanie Hernandez nominated her and said, “Laura has been with the league for 30-plus years, and she continously is on the touchlines watching her grandkids play. Her son Keith and daughter Joelle are still involved in the game today.“
Laura was part of the very first wave of girls soccer players when she played for North Babylon High School back in the early days of the LIJSL when the league did not yet have any girls teams.
“I became more involved again when Keith started to play soccer in Deer Park at age 5 in 1981,“ she explained.
Both her kids played in the LIJSL’s Bay Shore Soccer Club in 1986, Laura coached Joelle while her husband Dennis coached Keith. Laura received her C coaching certificate from the NSCAA (now United Soccer Coaches) and Dennis got his A, B and C certificates from the same organization.
It was two years later that Laura started working in the LIJSL office, starting out part-time and becoming full-time in 1989, and she and her very positive attitude have worked at the three different LIJSL office locations in Plainview, as well as in the new office in Ronkonkoma for the past decade.
While the West Islip resident was going to work at the LIJSL every weekday, her kids continued playing. She coached Joelle in the LIJSL’s West Islip Soccer Club, then her daughter played for Newfield and Oceanside’s Under-23 team, in addition to playing for Wagner College’s soccer and lacrosse teams. Joelle now lives in Orlando and played for co-ed teams until very recently.
Dennis coached Keith at Liberty Cup Ireland in 1992, then Keith finished out his LIJSL career with the clubs in Brentwood and Newfield before playing for Newfield’s Under-23 team in the Long Island Soccer Football League (LISFL). Keith plays for the Amityville men’s team today.
There’s now a new generation of Koziks on LIJSL fields as all three of Laura’s grandchildren play soccer. Keith coached his oldest child, Alyssa Kozik, in Bellport and she went on to play for HBC, Patchogue/Medford, East Islip and Lindenhurst. Haley Kozik plays for the East Islip Destroyers and she previously was on West Islip, while the youngest, Dylan Kozik, plays for the West Islip Dragons.
Alyssa, Haley and Dylan have all spent a good deal of time at the Peter Collins Soccer Park in Plainview as they played for the LIJSL’s Player Development Program (PDP) as well.
That’s an awful lot of soccer for one person to play, coach, administer and watch. Congratulations to Laura Kozik, Eastern New York’s Personality of the Month for June.
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 nine 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.