April 21, 2022 (Berkeley County, WV) – West Virginia Soccer (Formerly WVFC Panhandle) announced on Thursday they have been awarded entry into the United States Youth Soccer (USYS) National League. This serves as USYS’s top competition platform for boys and girls, ages U13 to U19 in the United States.
The USYS National League is expanding their footprint by granting established elite clubs access to the national platform in the West Virginia Panhandle, Virginia and Maryland through the league’s South Atlantic Conference. League play will reflect a team-to-team performance model, and logistically, a club-to-club model, as appropriate, to maintain positive club culture on game days.
West Virginia Soccer National League teams will have the opportunity to advance to the USYS National League Player Recruitment Opportunity (PRO) competition and USYS National Championships. In addition to league play, all National League teams will compete in the West Virginia Soccer Association (WVSA) State Cup which provides another direct pathway to the USYS National Championship. Each state in the United States has a state association that governs soccer in that specific state and feeds directly into the USYS ecosystem. For example, West Virginia is West Virginia Soccer Association, Virginia is Virginia Youth Soccer Association and Maryland is Maryland State Soccer Association.
West Virginia Soccer Panhandle teams will also look to participate in top recognized show case tournaments including Jefferson Cup, CASL Showcase, Bethesda Showcase, EDP Showcases and the Disney College Showcase.
All teams competing in the USYS National League will be referred to as “West Virginia Soccer National League” teams. For Example, 2006B West Virginia Soccer National League or 2006G West Virginia Soccer National League. Each player will also wear the USYS National League patch on their right sleeve on both their home and away uniforms.
Teams ages U8 to U12 will be recognized as Pre-National League Teams. (Ex. 2012B West Virginia Soccer Pre-National League. West Virginia Soccer Panhandle High School age teams will compete within a West Virginia Panhandle and Maryland Virginia division of the South Atlantic conference offering a schedule that is tailored to accommodate high school soccer participation. USYS National League players recognize the National League is a year-long program and is expected to be their primary commitment.
West Virginia Soccer boys and girls have been recognized nationally and selected to College Soccer Programs including Shepherd University, West Virginia Wesleyan, Frostburg University, Concord University, Fairmont State University and West Liberty University. The National League will help with college player Identification and development opportunities with competition against other top clubs in the country.
West Virginia Soccer is an official MLS Affiliate of D.C. Uunited Academy. WV Soccer players may be identified for D.C. United MLS Talent Centers to be selected for the D.C. United MLS Next Academy Residency Program. This relationship will help with additional player development and identify opportunities for players in the West Virginia Panhandle and nearby areas.