July 9, 1999
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
For the next three weeks, July 11-27, the University of Wyoming will play host to the Region IV Olympic Development Soccer Camp and State Team Tournament on the UW campus. This will be the fourth year that UW has hosted this event.
Olympic Development Program (ODP) teams from the 13-state West region will be participating in the event. Over 1,300 female high school age soccer players will be in Laramie for the three one-week camps and tournaments. States represented include; Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, California, Idaho, Utah, Washington, Oregon, Montana, Alaska and Hawaii.
The Olympic Development Soccer Program provides an environment in which those serious junior soccer players can train and compete with the goal of making the United States National Teams. The USA team currently competing in the Women's World Cup is the highest U.S. national team.
Teams from each state compete in tournaments at one of four regional camps around the U.S. From those state teams a regional pool of players is selected, and then those regional squads compete at the Olympic Festival for a spot on the national team.
"The University of Wyoming has been wonderful," said Camp Director Kit Pierce. "The personnel has bent over backwards for us. The facilities and fields are well maintained, and the help from the athletic department has been everything we need. They answer the special needs that we have."
The tournament and camp is also a tremendous recruiting site for college coaches. Most collegiate soccer players have played on ODP teams in high school, and most of the ODP staff is made up of college level coaches.
"This is a great opportunity for the UW coaching staff to see some of the top junior players in the West region," said Anne Moore, Head UW Women's Soccer Coach and Camp Coordinator. "We get to watch some good soccer, and having all these top players on campus helps with recruiting. The large number of people in town also benefits the city of Laramie and gives the University revenue during the summer months."
"It is an exciting time for UW to have the Region IV ODP camp on our campus," added Associate Athletic Director Bruce Hemphill. "We will have many of the best young soccer players in the nation here in Laramie. There are many benefits to having this program here, such as, national exposure in a growing sport, economic benefit for UW and the city, and a positive impact on our up and coming UW womens soccer program."