LTSC TRAVEL SOCCER
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
(last update April 2023)
General FAQ about LTSC
Q – What is Travel Soccer and how is it different from In-House soccer?
A – The LTSC Travel Soccer Program is designed for players whose skills and inclinations suggest participation in a more competitive environment and with a greater level of competition. Players must try out and make a Travel Team, whereas all players who sign up for In-House Soccer get to participate.
Q – What is LTSC? Is it different than the LTRC Travel Program?
A – LTSC stands for Lutherville-Timonium Soccer Club. It is the "club name" which the LTRC Travel Program operates under. LTSC and the LTRC Travel Soccer Program are one in the same.
Q – How many travel teams does LTSC field?
A – If sufficient registration and talent permit, LTSC will field up to three (3) levels of teams in each age group: Boys "Green", "White", and “Silver” Teams, and Girls "Purple", "White", and “Silver” Teams. We expect to have teams for players with birth years 2007 through 2017. Green and Purple level teams usually play in the most competitive divisions in league and tournament play, followed by White level and Silver level teams.
Q – How are the age groups determined for Travel Teams?
A – The date for determination of a player’s age for Travel Teams is their birth year (Jan. 1- Dec. 31)
Q – Does LTRC require their Travel Soccer players to also play In-House Soccer?
A – No, however, each child has the option of continuing to play In-House Soccer. This is not typical, and parents should discuss this option with their travel coach if interested. Parents should be aware that if a conflict ever arises between an in-house game and a travel game, the child must play in the in-house game.
Q – If our child makes a Travel Team, when must we decide if he or she is playing In-House Soccer?
A – Parents must notify their travel coach whether they are playing In-House Soccer at the conclusion of the travel tryouts.
Q – Does my child have to register if they just plan to play Travel Soccer?
A – Yes. All travel soccer candidates must register for tryouts under the travel tab registration in order to participate in the tryouts. Do not register for in-house until after the travel team selections are complete. If you do not make a travel team, a separate registration must be completed in order to be placed on an in-house team.
Q – When do Travel Tryouts occur?
A – Tryouts for all Travel Teams generally start in mid-May. Unless delayed by weather problems or field availability, all tryouts will be concluded by the end of the public school year. The tryout schedule will be posted on our website.
Q – Is there a cost to participate in Travel Tryouts?
A – No, but travel soccer candidates must register to attend tryouts as described above. There is a cost to join a team if selected, as described below.
Q – How soon after registration will we receive information about travel tryouts?
A – Registration for travel tryouts will generally be open in early April until mid-May. We will make every effort to post the tryout dates and times on our website at www.ltrcsoccer.org as soon as they are set. LTSC and/or age group coordinators will also send an email as the tryout approaches providing logistics information. All emails will be sent to the email address that is used during the registration process.
Q – Does my child have to attend all the tryout sessions to be eligible for travel soccer teams?
A – There are usually two (2) nights of tryouts for each age group. We recognize that most kids are involved in other sports or activities at this time. Players must attend at least one (1) tryout sessions to be considered for a travel team. However, players are encouraged to attend as many sessions as possible to facilitate their evaluation. In certain circumstances, coaches may hold an additional tryout in order to thoroughly evaluate all of the players.
Q – Can my child tryout for a White or Silver Team without attending the Purple/Green Team tryouts?
A – All Purple/Green, White and Silver Team tryouts for a particular age group will be held at the same time. Players should notify the travel team coach running the tryouts that he/she wants to be considered only for the White and Silver Teams.
Q – How many players are kept on each team?
A – 7v7 teams (2014-2017) will typically carry 11 players; 9v9 teams (2012-2013) will typically carry 13 players; all older age groups will play 11v11 and typically carry 16 players.
Q – Who picks the teams? What skills are evaluated by the coaches?
A – A committee of LTSC coaches from inside and outside the age group are responsible for evaluating the players and choosing the team. . Players are evaluated not only on their soccer skills, but also on fitness, agility, team play, cooperation, and attentiveness. For any team where a coach has not yet been determined, the Evaluation Committee will make the decisions, and coaches will be identified after team selection.
Q – Do the coaches keep only the kids who made the team in prior years?
A – Every coach is responsible for evaluating all the players and giving each one a chance to make a team. Players who were on the team in prior years must try out like everyone else. There are generally openings on all teams due to development, kids moving, changing sports, or other reasons.
Q – When are the team selection decisions made?
A – Coaches will begin to make decisions regarding players immediately following the conclusion of the tryouts.
Q – My child is an accomplished player and is good enough to make a team in an older age group. Are they allowed to play up for an older LTSC age group?
A – While we recognize that some players could make an older age group team, LTSC generally does not promote players to play out of their designated age group.
Q – What if I move into the area after the travel teams are selected?
A – All team rosters are finalized at the end of tryouts. Any exceptions to this rule must be approved by the travel program coordinator and board leadership.
Q – How often do the Travel Teams practice and when do practices start?
A – Practice frequency is left to the discretion of the coaches. Most teams begin practicing over the summer, with the frequency picking up in August. Most teams practice two nights a week during the Fall season.
Q – Which nights do teams practice?
A – Practice timing is left to the discretion of the coaches.
Q – When does the season start, and how frequently do the teams play?
A – Most teams start the season with a tournament in late August. Weekend league games generally start the weekend after Labor Day. The majority of the Purple/Green Teams play in Saturday and/or Sunday leagues, while most White and Silver Teams play only in Saturday leagues. However, this is left up to the discretion of the coaches with input from the parents. We do have Purple/Green Teams that only play one weekend day a week, and White Teams that play on Saturday and Sunday.
Q – How many tournaments do teams play in?
A – Most teams play in 2 to 4 tournaments over the Fall season. This often includes a pre-season tournament in late August, mid-season tournament in October, and/or an end-of-season tournament in November.
Q – How much Travel is really involved?
A – The leagues and tournaments that are entered for a particular team are chosen by the coaches with some input from the parents. Most teams play in leagues in the Greater Baltimore region, thus the travel for most away games is within a 20-40 minute drive. Our most competitive teams may travel farther to find appropriate level of competition. Tournaments can be in the Greater Baltimore region, with a few teams occasionally traveling to out-of-state tournaments (typically in PA, DE, or VA).
Q – When does the season end?
A – The Fall season ends in mid-November for most teams.
Q – What if my child plays another sport in the Fall?
A – Soccer is the in-season sport in the Fall. Players who make a commitment to play on an LTSC team are required to commit to soccer in the Fall. In the event of a conflict with another sport, soccer is to take priority. (Note: In the Winter and Spring, when soccer is not the in-season sport, we encourage our players to prioritize the in-season sport.)
Q – What about Winter and Spring?
A – A commitment to a travel team is for the Fall season. However, most teams also offer opportunities in the Winter (e.g., Winter training, indoor soccer, and/or futsal) and in the Spring (Spring Training and League play). These activities are optional and LTSC values multi-sport athletes. It is therefore expected that in-season sports take priority over soccer in the Winter and Spring. Any potential conflicts should be discussed with coaches at the end of the Fall season when Winter and Spring commitments are being discussed.
Q – How much does it cost to play Travel Soccer?
A – Players selected for a LTSC Travel team must pay an initial travel registration fee to confirm their spot on the team (approximately $200). The travel registration fee covers field rentals and lighting at The Park School, early season team training for teams U12 and under, equipment needs (goals, nets, corner flags, etc.) and various county and league administrative costs. Players must buy uniforms (training and game uniforms, totaling approximately $160) every 1-2 years (LTSC operates on a 2 year uniform cycle, but some players join the program mid-cycle). Additional costs per team (team dues) depend on the leagues entered, rostering body, and the number and level of tournaments played, and will typically range from $150-$500, excluding out of town travel expenses. These costs are not paid until the team is selected and the coach completes a budget for the season.
LTSC and Northern Baltimore United (NBU)
Q – What is Northern Baltimore United, and how is it related to LTSC?
A – Many area clubs have seen that participation in travel soccer deceases when players reach high school (9th grade and beyond). The demands of high school athletics, academics, and other extra-curricular activities can make it challenging to commit to a travel program like LTSC. As stated on their website, NBU was formed to address this issue and offer a pathway for those that wish to continue playing soccer outside of high school teams. LTSC supports this mission, but we do not have a formal administrative or financial relationship with NBU.
Q – What ages does NBU start?
A – Teams entering the 8th/9th grade year, which for the 2023-2024 academic year would be players born in 2009. Please refer to the NBU website for more information.
Q – Will LTSC continue to offer teams at the 8th/9th grade level and older?
A – Yes, if there is sufficient interest. Existing players should reach out to their coaches to discuss. Players considering the program should reach out to the boys or girls travel coordinator.
Q - Is my child guaranteed to play at least a half of a game like he or she would be in in-house soccer?
A – We encourage all travel coaches to be sensitive to the mission and program constitution of LTSC and each coach is given suggested guidelines. However, the amount of playing time for travel players is not guaranteed.
Q – I’ve heard that my child will need a picture identification card. How do I get one?
A – All players must be registered with a state or national soccer association as part of the team rostering process. Different leagues and tournaments have different requirements - your team’s manager will coordinate this process and costs are included in the team dues.
Q – What if I have other questions?
A – You can e-mail questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Travel Coordinator listed under Board Members on the website.