Trialists battle weather, show their skills at Ocean City Nor'easters PDL tryouts
The main goal of the tryouts is to fill out the roster for the Nor’easters' upcoming season
The Ocean City Nor’easters invited more than 50 players to tryout to join the team’s Premier Development League (PDL) roster on Sunday, March 20. The event brought out players from multiple countries and many different skillsets in hopes of earning a spot on the team for the upcoming PDL season.
Along with various drills and small sided games, trialists were thrown an extra challenge as rain, wind, and light snow greeted the players as they entered the soccer stadium at Rutgers-Camden University in Camden, NJ. It would challenge them to play beyond their limits in hopes of impressing the coaches.
Nor'easters head coach Tim Oswald was satisfied in how the tryouts went.
“We thought the tryout was excellent,” Oswald said. “We thought the level was great. The weather didn’t cooperate, but the kids worked hard and were positive and we got a lot out of it.”
Split into two sessions, each consisting of 25 players, the tryouts began with warm-up drills led by assistant coach Christos Economopoulos. After that, the players split into groups for small sided games led by Economopoulos and Oswald. While on the far side of the field, goalkeeper trialists were put through their paces by goalkeeping coaches John Fogarty and Charlie Flowe.
Each session included full games with players going at game speed to show off their skills to the coaches and spectators in attendance. Goals were scored on both ends and many of the players left lasting impressions on the coaching staff.
Nor’easters general manager Kevin Nuss believes that open tryouts are an important part of building the team’s roster.
“We are always on the lookout for the next undiscovered talent, as that is our main objective as a club,” Nuss said. “Our tryouts have proven successful in that year after year. Even with our extensive, year-round recruiting effort, there are too many quality players in the tri-state area and our tryouts have continued to prove invaluable to identify the best local players.”
The main goal of the tryouts is to fill out the roster for the Nor’easters' upcoming PDL season. Ocean City will open the campaign on May 18 against Leigh Valley United Sonic. Ocean City will kick off its home schedule at Carey Stadium on Saturday, June 4 when they host long-time rival Reading United AC.