Snapshots of Spring Preseason Training

I went out to Jennings last night to meet our new goalie trainer Arturo Ornelas and take some photos.  It was a hive of energy with all our teams getting ready for spring league. Arturo was excellent with our younger players.  He hopes to play goalkeeper for Sonoma State University next season.  Best of luck, Arturo, and thank you for training our goalies.  Great job to all our coaches for a great start to 2015.

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The Southampton Way – Developmental Soccer [VIDEO]

southampton football club - soccer club in English Premier LeagueNBC Sports broadcasted a documentary about Southampton Football Club, which has been the surprise of the Barclay’s Premier League in England, now fourth in the table.  A veritable minnow of English Football, compared to the likes of Manchester United and Chelsea, Southampton made a name for itself as a club committed to developing home-grown players.  And you may have heard of some of the players to come out of Southampton, like Gareth Bale, Alex Oxlade Chamberlain, Theo Walcott, Adam Lallana, Luke Shaw and Calum Chambers. For the Black Oaks, as a new club in a hotbed for soccer in California, we can take some inspiration from Southampton. ENJOY!

Black Oaks Win SSU Six Aside Youth Soccer Tournament

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Congratulations to the U9 Boys SR Black Oaks for taking home the first place trophy from the Puma Seawolf Cup Six-A-Side Silver and Bronze – Boys soccer tournament July 20 at Sonoma State University.

The Oaks won in impressive fashion, coming from behind to beat Taihuichi FC. The Oaks vindicated an earlier loss to the same Taihuichi squad. It was a good day for the Oaks against their cross-town rivals. The U9 Black Oaks Arsenal came from behind to tie Taihuichi’s Bronze level team. Read more of this post

Celebrating Cinco de Martin

Martin Linley - Santa Rosa Black Oaks Soccer Club

Long-time Black Oaks Soccer Player Martin Linley

There will never be another Cinco de Mayo without remembering my old friend Martin Linley.  Martin was a founding member of the Black Oaks and played for several years on the over 30 team.  He was a feisty Brit who played hard, but after the whistle blew he would go from swearing at you to drinking pints with you, and made friends wherever he traveled.

He had many famous quotes, some directed at me and other teammates, like: “Touch of a donkey, lad!” or “Get stuck in!” A stalwart fullback, Martin had one philosophy, “You can let the ball by you, or the man by you, but never both.”  We had many great memories, including a fun soccer tournament in Puerto Vallarta with his family and our 30+ soccer team, Black Oaks Sol.  I always thought of him like an uncle, big brother, or team captain.

Not only did I have the pleasure of playing soccer with Martin, I worked with him for many years.  He was a mechanical engineer and loved working on cars, motorcycles and carts, loved to drive fast and love to experiment, or as he puts it, “blow things up.”  He was always a source of inspiration and recreation for me, whether it was having pints after work, talking about English soccer, or playing soccer, often a couple times a week. Read more of this post

Co-Ed Adult Team Promoted to Level A of the SCCSL

Santa Rosa Soccer Adult Co-Ed Team for the SCACSL Black Oaks

2012 Black Oaks Adult Co-Ed Team of the SCACSL

Congratulations to the Black Oaks Adult Co-Ed Soccer team and Coach Luis Medina for their promotion to the top Co-Ed League in Sonoma County.  The Vencedores have been promoted to Level A of the SCACSL (Sonoma County Adult Co-Ed Soccer League) following their first place finish for the 2012 season.  Coach Medina says he’s been making some moves in the off-season to bolster his team for the stiffer competition. They play their first game of the 2013 season next Saturday.  Go, OAKS!