Michael Alcaraz (head coach) and Harry Ocampo (assistant coach) have been announced as the coaches for the U17 Boys Black team.
“I look forward to preparing the group for the upcoming college showcases,” said coach Alcaraz. “As their coach, I want to guide them in the right direction and help them achieve the next step in their soccer careers.”
As a player, coach Alcaraz played soccer for four years at Burbank High School in Burbank, California. He was honored as a three-time All-Pacific League selection and also played in the Dallas Cup during his youth years. In college, he played for Pasadena City College and later transferring to Manhattanville College. Coach Alcaraz is now coaching at Manhattanville as an assistant coach. He was an assistant coach to the MAC Freedom Coach of the Year in 2018.
“I plan on making them a good team through realistic training sessions and leading the player,” said coach Alcaraz. “I want the players to be involved and have a voice.”
Coach Harry Ocampo is currently the head coach of the U14 Boys Black. Last year, he coached as an assistant for the U17 Boys Black and helped lead them to the finals of the Potomac College Showcase.
“At this age, players are on the cusp of college recruitment and need to have someone who can help hold them accountable and be supportive at the same time,” said coach Harry. “With so much going on in their personal lives, it's easy to lose dedication and focus.”
“I've found myself to be more of the "player's coach" when working in the assistant role,” said coach Harry. “Last year's experiences taught me that players respond well to that type of support and buy-in easier to the team when they have someone who will call them out when it's needed and at the same time, put an arm around them and help offer support when facing a challenge -- sport related or not.”
Coach Ocampo said he looks forward to building the teams chemistry quickly.
“All of the players have been away with their respective high school teams,” said coach Ocampo, “and it will take time playing in a different system with new players and a new coaching staff. Once we have that, then all the little things tactically can be worked on throughout the season.”