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2018-2019 GIRLS TEAM SELECTION

Information and registration is now live.  Read the most recent letter from Ray Fumo, Girls Director of Coaching & Player Development.  Any player interested in a USYS team in the South program for next year, or players who are interested in being considered for the Girls ECNL program can learn more and register on our Tryouts page


Coaching Staff for 2018-2019

'00/'01 Girls ECNL - Nathan Williams
'02 Girls ECNL - Nathan Williams
'03 Girls ECNL -  Jeremy Weeks
'04 Girls ECNL - Jeremy Weeks
'05 Girls ECNL - Jeremy Weeks
'06 Girls ECNL -  Ray Fumo

GK Director - Garrett Linquist
Physical Development Program - Novant EXOS

ROSTER ANNOUNCEMENTS 2018-2019

Abigal Olean Addison Benz Addison Galek
Alex Odle Amaya Beard Annamaria Evans
Annika Ford Ayden Vaughan Brooke Lavelle
Brooke Van Epps Caileen Almeida Camden Poole
Cameron Grainger Cameron Koster Caroline Pulliam
Catherine Murphy Charley Teckenbrock Chloe Hylton
Chloe Mullen Ella Crawford Fisher Daniela Evans
Elizabeth Navola Ella Futch Ella Joaquin
Ella Matthews Ella Simons Ella Smith
Emily Ashlin Emily Sansbury Emma Wakeman
Faith Adams Grace Joaquin Gracyn Chaffee
Hailey Matthews Helen Summerell Jenna Ryan
Jezik Martin Jill Flanders Julia Daley
Julianne Patterson Kaehler Marsh Kalea Pace
Kasey Hahn Katherine Phillips Katie Moore
Katie Sanger Kelly Poole Kendyl Lauher
Keri Geter Kyleigh Von Klahr Kylie Vilseck 
Lea Wissell
Lillian Rusher
Lily Suyao
Lindsay Bowman
Logan Boggs
Louisa Terry
Maddyson Kerley
Madisen Milliron
Madison Steele
Maelee Dudan
Maria Rayburn
Mary Alexander
Mckenna Woodhead
Meg McHugh
Meredith Sheridan
Mia Acosta-Nicholson
Nia Harley
Olivia McPherson
Reagan Cullen
Riley Milligan
Sage Branch
Savannah Bishop
Savannah Noll
Sejal Johnson
Skylar Noll
Sydney Smith
Tori Paul

NATIONAL Champions!

Congratulations to the 98s - US YOUTH SOCCER NATIONAL CHAMPIONS!

Game Highlights

U18s honored at halftime of Charlotte Independence game before heading to USYS Nationals

Girls ECNL Players in the News

February 20, 2018
ECNL Player Development Program

We are extremely excited to announce our Girls ECNL program had 9 players selected to attend the upcoming Mid Atlantic region Girls ECNL PDP.  The event will take place February 24-25 in Greenville, SC, and will be attended by the top performers from the division.

Please join us in congratulating Faith Adams, Meg McHugh, Alex Odle, Sydney Smith, Emma Wakeman, Addison Galek, Ella Joaquin, Kaehler Marsh, and Maria Rayburn!

The Girls ECNL Player Development Program works in conjunction with US Club Soccer’s  id2 Player Development Program (‘ECNL PDP’).  The Girls ECNL PDP events provide an opportunity for the top players within every Girls ECNL conference to play with and against the best players within their region at multiple age groups, and to attend presentations from leading coaches or experts in elite athlete development. The Girls ECNL PDPs are created with three primary goals:  identify the top players within each Girls ECNL conference at multiple age groups, provide a developmental experience, and recognize and reward individual performance and achievement.


February 16, 2018
Adams headed to Germany

Please join us in congratulating Faith Adams who was selected to join the Region III ODP team on an upcoming trip to Germany.  Faith, who has verbally committed to play at Wake Forest, will spend 10 days in April traveling to various parts of the country training and playing against some of the top female clubs in Germany!  We are so proud of Faith and can't wait to hear about this wonderful opportunity!


January 17, 2018
Wakeman headed to Costa Rica

Congratulations to Girls ECNL GK Emma Wakeman for being selected to go to Costa Rica with the '02 ODP Region III team.  Emma not only will represent the club, but she'll represent our state as the only North Carolina player selected.  Her week long trip beings Feb 22, and will consist of 3 games, multiple training sessions, as well as opportunities to tour the local area!  Congratulations and good luck Emma!!!


August 22, 2017
2017-2018 Conference Preview
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July 31, 2017
Congratulations to Faith Adams, Addi Galek, Alex Odle, Tori Paul, Kaela Rasenberger, and Emma Wakeman all made the ODP Region Team!

July 6, 2017
Molly McGarry name to NSCAA All America Team
Read More

June 28, 2017
U18s Crowned Region III Champions!
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June 19, 2017
Ash Serepca earns 2nd straight NC Gatorade Player of the Year award!
Read More

Meghan Lang
trains with Swedish club AIK Academy


March 27, 2017
Mia Thillet invited to join Puerto Rican Full National Team
Read More

March 20, 2017
Congrats to McKenna Woodhead on being invited to US National Futsal trials.
Read More

December 7, 2016
Ash Serepca invited to US National Team Camp
Read More

September 20, 2016
U-16 GNT vs. Netherlands: Highlights
Ash's goal 1:45

 

September 15, 2016
Ash Serepca heading to Netherlands with U16 WNT
Read More 

September 1, 2016
Courtney Walker invited into U18 WNT Camp
Read More

July 28, 2016

Jordan Taylor invited into U16 WNT Camp
Read More

Player Interest form for 2019-2020

College Commitments

Congratulations to our ECNL athletes headed to play in college!

Syd Smith - UNC Charlotte (2020)
Hailey Matthews - Miami University, Ohio (2020)
Lily Suyao - UNC Charlotte (2020)
Lea Wissell - UNC Charlotte (2020)
Emma Wakeman - UNC Charlotte (2020)
Faith Adams - Wake Forest (2020)
Tori Paul - University of Maryland (2020)
Katie Phillips - ETSU (2019)
Mia Thillet - North Carolina State University (2018)
Ashlynn Serepca - University of Virginia (2018)
Kursten von Klahr - NC State University (2018)
Madison Oracion - University of Maryland (2018)
Kaelee Van Gundy - University of Arkansas (2018)
Julia Honeycutt - UNC Charlotte (2018)
Sierra Davis - Catawba College (2018)
Lindsay Poff - App State (2018)
Seraiah Dunham - UNC Greensboro (2018)
Cyan Mercer - Clemson University (2017)
Olivia Odle - Virginia Tech (2017)
Courtney Walker - Ohio State University (2017)
Kate Hickson - UNC Charlotte (2017)
Molly McGarry - UNC Wilmington (2017)
Grace Lynn-Lato - UNC Wilmington (2017)
Abby Stapleton - UNC Charlotte (2017)
Brooke Freeman - Catawba College (2017)
Naomi Powell - NC State (2017)

Staff

 Girls' ECNL Staff

Girls Director of Coaching Ray Fumo
Girls' ECNL Director Nathan Williams
Goalkeeper Director Scott Schweitzer, Erin Lykon
Physical Development Program Performance Unlimited, John Lytton

2017-2018 Coaching Staff
U18/U19 - Nathan Williams
U17 - Jeremy Weeks
U16 - Nathan Williams
U15 - Stephen Glass
U14 - Stephen Glass
U13 - Jeremy Weeks

RECENT NEWS

ECNL National Events: An Inspired & Unrivaled Playing Environment
Read More

The College Numbers Proven Path
Read More

We welcome Stephen Glass to the ECNL staff!
Read More

Carolina Rapids Soccer Welcomes Jeremy Weeks to the Rapids Staff!
Read More

The Carolina Rapids is pleased to announce the continued relationship between Performance Unlimited and our elite level girls program.
Read More

Nathan Williams named as ECNL Director
Read More

Carolina Rapids joins the Elite Clubs National League starting in the 2017/18 season
Read More

Program Accomplishments

U18 Academy National Champions, USYS
U18 Academy Automatic qualification for USYS Nationals through National League play
U18 AcademyChampions, Disney Soccer Showcase
U14 Academy Finalists, CESA Soccer Classic (U16 Flight)
U18 Academy  Invited into National League 
U18 Academy  Semi Finalists, USYS Nationals 
U18 Academy  Champions, USYS Regionals 
U16 Academy  Finalists, US Club Regionals 
U18 Academy  Champions US Club Regionals 

 

ECNL YEAR IN REVIEW

As the final whistle in the last regular season game of our inaugural season blew, it was only fitting that it was met with a loud cheer!  Year one of any program will always have its ups and downs, as they tackle the many new challenges they face.  Add in the task of competing against some of the top clubs in the country, and our brand new Rapids ECNL program had a huge hurdle to get over in year one.  Please join us in congratulating the girls, as well as the staff, in meeting the challenge head on, and succeeding!

The loud cheer previously mentioned was after our ’04 girls won their final regular season game, clinching a place at ECNL Nationals.   This accomplishment allows the girls to head to Seattle at the end of June and compete against the top 32 teams in the country.  What may be even more impressive is the way the girls earned the spot.  After finishing the fall season with only one win, the girls continued to trust the process, work hard, and ended up with a spring record of five wins, two ties, and only one loss.  Congratulations girls!

The ’04 girls will not be alone as they head to Seattle.  Based off their success in the fall, our ’00 girls have also qualified for ECNL Nationals.  As our oldest ECNL team, the ’00 girls set the standard in the fall finishing conference play in 2nd place, only behind McLean who is currently undefeated and the #2 team in the country.  What is even more impressive than our ’00 girls qualifying to compete as one of the top 16 teams in the country, is knowing that in an age group dominated by seniors, our ECNL program only graduated seven players.  This means our ‘00s consistently had many sophomores and juniors playing up, and were still able to not just compete, but succeed!  We’d also like to congratulate our ’01 girls who have qualified for the showcase portion of ECNL Nationals, allowing them another opportunity to play in front of numerous college coaches.

In year one, three of our five eligible teams qualified for ECNL Nationals, with two qualifying at the highest level!

The team successes just barely scratch the surface of some of the highlights this season.  First, to say team success is a false statement.  They are really program successes.  The program consistently provided opportunities for players to play up.  So many players played up, or trained together, that really every player helped someway to help these groups succeed.  Add in the number of Burgundy girls who stepped in to train and play, and the success really goes beyond just the 3 teams!  Another huge success this year is the culture that has been created.  Throughout the year, the number one response from the girls when asked what they liked most has been the training environment.  The standards that have been set with hard work, competitiveness, and focus have been like nothing they’ve ever experienced, and has created the groundwork for more success in the future.  Lastly, we currently have fifteen girls within the program that are committed to play in college, including the entire senior class.  This number will grow exponentially considering the performances the girls put on at the showcase events.  In year one, getting nervous while playing in front of 50+ college coaches during a game would be understandable.  The way the girls handled themselves both on and off the fields at the national showcase events makes us really excited about the future for these girls!

Finally, we know the girls deserve a ton of credit for all the successes and amount of growth we’ve seen this season.  We would be remiss not to also say a job well done by our ECNL Director, Nathan Williams, and ECNL Staff, Stephen Glass, Jeremy Weeks, and Erin Lykon.  The time, effort, and professionalism means the girls in this program are in excellent hands!  What an amazing start to our program in year one, and we could not be more excited about this summer and the start of year two!

ECNL GETS HIGH MARKS AFTER YEAR ONE

Director Ray Fumo: “We go out there and say, ‘This is us. Let's see if we're good enough to play with you’ ”

By M. Wayne Clarke

When news broke in late October of 2016 that the Carolina Rapids would be joining the Elite Clubs National League beginning in with 2017-’18 ECNL season, the club’s massive sigh of relief was quickly followed up with a burst of anxiety.

While the Rapids boasted upwards of 2,000 female players across all age groups, inclusion in the ECNL girls program is no doubt next level – with much work to be done.

“There's so much more to this than just getting a talented group of girls together and playing,” explains Ray Fumo, the Rapids girl's Director of Coaching and Player Development. “That almost is the easy part. We had to build a culture. We had players that came from a lot of different teams and clubs, as well as two new coaches, that had to buy in to our way of thinking and playing. Obviously with a program with a national draw, it doesn't just attract top players, it also attracts top coaches too – and we were able to bring in Jeremy Weeks and Stephen Glass, who had a lot of previous success, to join our ECNL director Nathan Williams.”

Tasked with building the program from the ground up, the staff’s biggest hurdle was getting everyone on the same page in a relatively short amount of time. Not only was culture critical to the build, so was the player methodology - particularly with players coming from different clubs.

“Culture is massive for us as well as building a pathway to get everybody to buy in to our way of thinking,” explained Fumo, who is in his fourth year with the Rapids. “We had to be open to thinking creatively and outside the box as we were planning this out. It was stressful and exciting to try and put it together.”

As word spread that the Rapids would be looking for the best and brightest to form their program, the Rapids staff – over a six-week span in January of 2017 – had ID sessions, fielding upwards of 200 players for the older age groups and close to the same for the younger ages later in the spring. Eventually, the club fielded six groups – U13 through U18 – totaling 90 players that would compete against teams throughout North and South Carolina, Wilmington, Washington, D.C. and Fairfax, Virginia. 

In the first year, and coaches had tempered expectations. On one hand, they were happy to be in this elite pool but as competitors, they felt a need to show they belonged. 

The results proved the latter, as three of the Rapids five eligible teams qualified for nationals play with two qualifying at the highest level. 

Fumo highlighted the ’04 girls, which had a record of 1-3-2 in the fall but rebounded in the spring going 5-1-2; their journey perfectly encapsulates the entire program. 

“They got off to a slow start,” said Fumo of the ’04 group, which will travel to Seattle June 20 to 27 and compete against the top 32 teams in the country. “But we had a plan for them to follow, and they put together a great Spring and it really all came down to the last game where we had to beat the team that was in front of us to jump into the spot and we scored a relatively late goal. It was just kind of a fitting way for that group to finish off the regular season because [head coach] Jeremy Weeks and the girls had worked really, really hard to get there.”

 

Weeks, who had oversight of the ’04s and ’05s, said what might’ve looked like a rough start in the fall for the ’04s was really par for the course in terms of expectations. “We started out as a brand-new team – no more than three of these girls had ever played together prior to the year – so the whole fall season was about them getting on board with our philosophy and our culture,” Weeks explained. “Once that was established, it was about getting better together—individually and collectively as a group.”

 

While there isn’t a national championship for the 13s, they, too, followed a similar trajectory. The 14s, a first-year group for ECNL, along with the 18s, finished their respective seasons high enough to qualify for the top level of nationals. The 17s, meanwhile, will compete in a bracket that will allow them to be seen by college coaches from around the country. 

“For the 14s, it's a whole new world out there,” Fumo says of the first-year program. “When you talk about big fish in little ponds, this is a whole big ocean out there where you go and compete against some of the top players and teams from the northeast, California, and Texas. For us, it'll be more another opportunity to see where we're at and measure ourselves up against the best and say, ‘Okay, here is where we are at, we'll keep working and get closer to them.’ Hopefully by the time they're U18, they'll be ready to go.” 

 

The 18s might have a bullseye on their chest; they finished second in conference play behind a powerhouse McLean team ranked second in the country. “To be fair, they beat us twice,” Fumo conceded, “but [they] had three or four national team kids and were loaded with girls going to play in the ACC. They were just very good, but we go out there and say, ‘Hey, this is us. Let's see if we're good enough to play with you.’

“This is just the beginning”

This developmental process is nothing new for the Rapids, which has a strong track record with multiple players currently in youth national teams, and many more with experience in national identification programs in USYS Regional ODP and US Club Soccer’s id2 Program. The last two years in particular – on the girls side – have seen the steadiest growth, beginning with a U.S. Youth Soccer national championship from last year, a U.S. Club national championship in 2016, 50 players having committed to play at the collegiate level (2016-2018 classes) and four players fielding invitations to National team camps.

“We’re absolutely delighted to be here,” said Carolina Rapids Executive Director Thomas Finlay of the girls’ program and the ECNL, which was founded in 2009 to enhance the developmental experience of female youth soccer players around the country. “This league provides an unmatched player development platform for our top female soccer players and supports our holistic approach to player development both on and off the field. It also gives us as directors and coaches a natural boost to improve our level of service to our players. This is just the beginning.”

 

As for how Year One has come together, Weeks said he was pleasantly surprised at what can be deemed early success. “For us, it was a big shocker in terms of how quickly it all came together,” admitted Weeks, who started with the Rapids in January of 2017. “It’s a long journey for all the players and it culminates in that final year – that U18 year. That’s really the year we’re pushing for to qualify at the highest levels, so for the 14s, for example, to somehow find that level beforehand was a great accomplishment for the girls. Ultimately that’s what’s it’s about – about the players.”