This information is intended for families of soccer players headed into 4th-8th grade this Fall 2021.

As you know, our club has three types of teams: Kindergarten/1st Grade, Recreational, and Select.

  • Kindergarten and 1st Grade are internal youth development teams.
  • Recreational level teams are 2nd-6th and play in the East Side Soccer League (ESSL), called “East Side”.
  • Select level teams are U10-U15 non-high school and play in the Capital Area Soccer League (CASL), referred to “Castle.”

US Soccer encourages all players to play on teams and against teams with similar skill level.  Every year, youth soccer players develop at different paces.  ELSC forms teams to support progressive player development and to have fun enjoying the great game of soccer.

CASL teams are official US Soccer registered teams with Michigan State Youth Soccer Association (MSYSA).  Select level teams have official roster limits.  Teams are intended to offer a higher level of competitiveness, commitment, and compete against other similar teams in the Greater Lansing & Mid-Michigan area.

ESSL teams are more local community and intended to be less-competitive and more fun-and-exercise based.  Teams do not have official roster limits.

If your child wants to play Select level soccer, he or she must participate in Player Evaluations, and compete for one of the limited roster spots available. Our Club’s Player Evaluations will always be held the week following MSYSA Premier soccer team tryouts.  All ELSC player evaluations will be held at the East Lansing Soccer Complex.

We hope to form teams for all ages and genders, from 2nd grade through 8th grade and occasionally higher, but this really depends on how many players enroll at each age and level.

All 4th-6th grade players who know they want to play on a Recreational team do not need to attend Player Evaluations/Tryouts, but are encouraged to as it is another time to have fun and touch the ball.  This is not like a traditional tryout.  The format is setup for everyone to mostly play small sided (4v4) games.  We are encouraging all of our players – even those with a passing or no interest in Select soccer (4th grade and older) to join us for the appropriate sessions. We’d like to use this as an event to build a sense of community for our Recreational and Select programs in our Club, and we’re hoping to send every kid some positive reinforcement and feedback.

All 4th grade player desiring to be placed on a Select/CASL team, must attend Player Evaluations the 3rd week in June (6/15, 6/16).  If you are planning to be out of town that week, you need contact to make alternative evaluation plans.  There will be two session for each age group; attending both is encouraged but only one is necessary. Select/CASL teams will be formed and finalized by end of June; Recreational teams will be formed and finalized in July.

In 2017, CASL has adopted the US Soccer Birth Year Policy changes impacting all clubs where, all players are placed on teams by calendar birth year (i.e. Jan. 1 – Dec. 31).  Players may play one age level up (two levels with written permission and CASL approval), but may not play an age level down.  Here is a quick Under “U” age to birth year chart for the 2020-2021 season.

U11 are players that are in 4th grade and born after 12/31/2010.
U12 are players that are in 5th grade and born after 12/31/2009
U13 are players that are in 6th grade and born after 12/31/2008.

U15NHS are players that are in 7th-8th grade and born after 12/31/2006.

While, Select/CASL teams will be formed by end of June, everyone who attends Player Evaluations will be contacted with the outcome and some feedback.  Additional Recreational level teams will then be formed in July/August.


Parents/Players should plan to arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled start time. Players check in at the EL Soccer Complex pavilion and are loaned a numbered jersey that is to be returned to us that night. Bring a ball of your own, shin guards, and appropriate footwear, along with water to drink and wear a mask.

Grade in Fall 2021 Girls Boys
Tuesday, June 15 Wednesday, June 16
4th Grade 5:00pm 5:00pm
5th Grade 5:00pm 5:00pm
6th grade 6:30pm 6:30pm
7th grade 6:30pm 6:30pm
8th grader 6:30pm 6:30pm
If you have any questions, please email us at