August 31, 2010

AYSO Skills Day Proves to be a Huge Success

Aug. 31, 2010

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - This past Saturday, the UCSB men's and women's soccer programs teamed up with Santa Barbara AYSO for the first AYSO Skills Day at Girsh Park. The event proved to be a huge success with approximately 1,000 AYSO players, parents and coaches showing up to participate in clinics and skills training run by the Gauchos.

"The day totally blew away our expectations," said Sean Mason, the Assistant Regional Commissioner of Santa Barbara AYSO. "We knew the players and coaches would have fun and learn new skills, which they did. What we didn't know was how many. We kept our fingers crossed and hoped that at least 300-400 players would show up, but that didn't happen. Instead, we had about 800 AYSO players and 50 coaches, which only proves that Santa Barbara is most definitely Soccer Town USA.

"The UCSB men's and women's soccer players were awesome mentors and coaches. My hat is off to Greg Wilson, Tim Vom Steeg, Paul Stumpf, their staffs and the UCSB soccer teams for creating a day that will be remembered by all of us involved in AYSO for a long time. I couldn't imagine a better way to kick-off the soccer season."

The event was presented free of charge to all AYSO players, coaches and families that chose to attend. Throughout the day, the UCSB men's and women's soccer players participated in skills training, autograph sessions and face painting with AYSO players. Meanwhile, the UCSB coaches ran coaches clinics. Additionally, there were several other activities and promotional give-a-ways.

"AYSO Skills Day was a great success and was a positive event for everyone involved," said UCSB Executive Associate Athletics Director Tom Hastings. "Our student-athletes and coaches work tirelessly on the field and it is admirable that they are still able to make time to give back to their community."

AYSO Skills Day was part of the Gauchos Give community outreach initiative.

To view photos of the event, visit the Photo Gallery.

Both the women's and men's soccer programs participate in several other community outreach activities throughout the season, including the Gaucho Guest Coaching Program and autograph sessions after each game. For more information on these programs, click here.

Season tickets for the 2010 soccer season are still available. All season ticket packages include tickets for the 2010 Men's College Cup, which is being hosted by UCSB on Dec. 10-12 at Meredith Field at Harder Stadium. Individual season tickets start at just $75 and include one ticket to all home men and women's regular season games and one 2010 Men's College Cup all-session ticket. UCSB staff and faculty can purchase their season tickets for a reduced rate of $50.

To purchase your tickets for the 2010 soccer season, or for more information, please call (805) 893-UCSB, visit the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus or buy online by clicking here.