SIGMA FC - B1 (1995)
Competition: U21 Provincial West
The SIGMA B1 (1995) squad is one of more experienced teams in the academy. The core of the team has been together since the beginning of SIGMA in 2006 and travelled to Spain and Holland as part of the first SIGMA competition. The team formed in its current competitive form in 2008 and has been largely intact ever since.
"You probably have a core of 16 players that have been together the better part of four years, if you look at all the players, they have been together and developed under our philosophy for years," said team head coach Bobby Smyrniotis. "Sometimes you see that, and the players become too comfortable. What we have seen with the guys is that, yes, they are comfortable with each other, but it is not affecting their play on the field."
Last season was a successful one for the 1995s. The team made the big jump from youth soccer to compete in the Ontario Soccer League Under-21 Regional league, where it won the East Division to earn promotion into the Provincial league for the 2012 season. An early season OSL U21 Cup run recently ended in the quarter-finals with a tough shoot-out loss to Whitby.
The 2012 season will be a key year for the 1995 who are entering their university recruiting campaign. Their attractive style of play has garnered much interest among coaches at the 2011 SIGMA University showcase.
The 1995s advanced to the quarter-final stage of the OSL U21 league cup this spring, and will play the 2012 season in the OSL U21 Provincial West league.
The team will attend the Adidas Potomac tournament in May in Maryland, and the Score Showcase in Greensboro, North Carolina in July. In addition to the importance of the showcase tournaments for this group, they will be exposed to individual coaching from top U.S. College programs at the SIGMA International ID Camps in June and July.
"The one thing that changes for them this year is that it becomes much more about where their future leads to. It's a time period in which you want to see the players play well tactically. They have developed to a degree, and now it is all about finding them a place to play going forward. We've seen players bring their games up to a different level. All 18 players are showing what they need to show on the field."