Soccer clubs honored

Soccer America magazine released its annual rankings of the top youth club programs in the country this week, and two Triangle area clubs have climbed up this year's lists.

The Capital Area Soccer Club placed its boys and girls programs on the magazine's Top 30 lists, with the CASL boys rated second-best nationally, and the Triangle United Soccer Association moved up three spots from last year to No. 28 nationally on Soccer America's boys club rankings.

CASL was the only club nationally to have its boys and girls programs ranked.

"It's a great honor to be listed among the top programs," CASL CEO Charlie Slagle said Wednesday. "It shows the kind of work our staff does."

Last year, the CASL boys club was ranked No. 7. The CASL girls club moved down two spots from a year ago, now ranked No. 18.

Rusty Scarborough, CASL's director of coaching, noted the girls club's dominance at the State Cup in November.

The magazine's rankings are based on clubs' success in national youth competitions the past three years and on the national recognitions awarded to clubs' players this year in terms of invitations to U.S. Soccer national teams and other honors.

Scarborough said that in the past year, four girls and five boys from CASL teams have been selected for national teams in their age divisions.

A top CASL U16 girls team also finished third in the Elite Clubs National League national championships, and CASL's U16 and U18 Academy boys teams made it to the Academy National Championships, with the U18s finishing third overall and the U16s finishing seventh.

"The reward is how we're perceived around the country," Scarborough said. "CASL is thought of very highly."

Efforts to reach John Cirillo, Triangle United's director of soccer, for comment were unsuccessful Wednesday.

In July, the '91 (U18) Triangle United Gold boys team reached the US Youth Soccer National Championships in Overland Park, Kan. or 919-836-4953