Schedules FAQ

Travel Program

Our Travel program is designed to offer players with competitive opportunities to develop the necessary abilities to play at the next highest level. We recognize that many coaches, players, and parents value competitive play, however, to assure proper player development our Travel coaches follow the developmental philosophy and methodologies set forth by U​ S Soccer​. No matter the level of competition, we promote development by challenging players to think independently and play good soccer.

The program's main goal is to field teams to compete in various divisions within the Essex County Youth Soccer Association​ (ECYSA). Grade 4 divisions are strictly recreational with no playoff system, but these teams may participate in a friendly jamboree each spring. Grade 6 and Grade 8 divisions do have a playoff system in the spring where winning does mean something, but our coaches are expected to reinforce player development no matter what the outcome of the game.

We ask that you review the newly implemented ​Travel Policy​ adopted by the Board to assure fairness, transparency and continuity with our Travel program. You will also find a ​ FAQ​ that attempts to answer the most common questions regarding these guidelines. We hope you will also take a moment to review the ​Player Development Initiatives​ to learn more about the development philosophy and playing standards set forth by US Soccer for the 7v7 and 9v9 playing formats used in this program.

Travel seasons consist of a ​combined​ eight games played in the fall and another eight games played in the spring. Fall games are scheduled from September to November with a break for Columbus Day. Spring games are scheduled from April to June with a break for Memorial Day. The start and end of each season is set by ECYSA.

Fall 2018: Season starts September 8th and the last day of the regular season is November 3rd.

Travel teams are formed by gender and dual grade as set by ECYSA.

Fall 2018/Spring 2019
Grade Group School Grade AND Born On or After
Grade 4 (includes Grade 3) 4th Grade or Lower AND 1/1/2008
Grade 6 (includes Grade 5) 6th Grade or Lower AND 1/1/2006
Grade 8 (includes Grade 7) 8th Grade or Lower AND 1/1/2004

Exceptions (please refer to ​ECYSA Operational Rules​ for full details):

  1. Players in Grade 6 may play up one Grade Group without waiver or restriction.
  2. Grade 6 Teams may play up one Grade Group without waiver or restriction.
  3. Grade 4 players may play up in Grade 6 if the conditions of ECYSA and Mass Youth Soccer policy are met.
  4. Grade 2 or younger players may play on a Grade 4 team if the conditions of ECYSA and Mass Youth policy are met AND a written waiver is received from the ECYSA Regional Vice President.
  5. Players may play up two Grade Groups if a written waiver is granted by the ECYSA Regional Vice President.
  6. Players may play down a Grade Group (based on Grade AND/OR DOB) only if a written waiver is granted by the ECYSA Regional Vice President​.

Player assessments serve as the key piece of data used in forming Travel teams. HYS seeks to form teams of players with similar abilities and place these teams in divisions of similar skill level within ECYSA. Players M​UST​ be registered prior to assessments. If a player is not registered, they cannot participate in assessments. Players who do not attend assessments and do not have an approved absence are not eligible for a Travel team. Please see the newly implemented ​ Travel Policy​ for complete details.

Player assessments for the 2018-2019 season will take place on Sunday, ​June 3rd​ and Sunday, June 10th​ at Consentino Middle School,​ located at 685 Washington Street.

Fall 2018/Spring 2019
June 3rd and June 10th at Consentino Middle School
Group Check In Start End
Grade 3/4 Boys 8:30 AM 9:00 AM 10:00 AM
Grade 3/4 Girls 10:00 AM 10:30 AM 11:30 AM
Grade 5/6 Boys 11:30 AM 12:00 PM 1:00 PM
Grade 5/6 Girls 1:00 PM 1:30 PM 2:30 PM
Grade 7/8 Boys 2:30 PM 3:00 PM 4:00 PM
Grade 7/8 Girls 4:00 PM 4:30 PM 5:30 PM


  1. Players should arrive 30 minutes before their assessment to check in.
  2. Players will be given an adhesive bib number upon check in.
  3. Players must wear shin guards.
  4. Players should bring a soccer ball and sports bottle with plenty of fluids.
  5. Players should not wear club soccer apparel.
  6. We ask that all incoming Grade 3 players and any players new to the Travel program bring a copy of their birth certificate to certify their age. We will not keep these, just verify the dates on the spot at check in.
  7. We ask all parents to stay off the fields during assessments.
  8. If there are extenuating circumstances (e.g. illness, injury, or unavoidable family obligation) that will prevent a player from attending their assessment, please contact the ​Travel Director​ before June 1st.