Dwindling numbers prompt OSL decision

Published 4:48 am Friday, February 6, 2004

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The Optimist Soccer League has made several changes to its oldest division in recent years.
The upcoming season will see yet another change as the high school division has been completely eliminated.
Dwindling numbers at the high school level prompted the change, according to league officials.
In recent years, the Optimist Soccer League decided to limit the high school division to players who had not played at the high school varsity level.
That decision, which was made in an effort to preserve the recreational aspect the league desires, eliminated a large number of high school players.
Also in recent years, issues have arisen concerning the physical nature of play at the high school level.
Willis gave one example of a varsity player who suffered a severe ankle injury during the Optimist Soccer season and had to miss an entire season of school sports because of the injury.
The league is seeing fewer numbers overall, but attributes that fact to other sports opportunities for children.