The Dublin Shield

A History of the Dublin Unified Soccer League

Kyle Shi, Staff Writer

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The Dublin United Soccer League has become a major organization with junior athletics in Dublin. Its program has consistently had success in major competitions and tournaments throughout the area. The program has been consistent and methodical, with the majority of all three Dublin High School soccer teams’ rosters being made up of people who have played for DUSL in the past. Dublin United was founded in 1967 and quickly became a popular sports organization for the youth. This was further developed with a girl’s program that was founded in 1973. Steve Minniear, President of the Dublin Historical Preservation Association credits the importance of Dublin United to the development of Dublin in the 60s and 70s. He theorizes that Dublin was going through a boom in development and growth during those decades. Housing developers would usually come and build the homes without developing the surrounding infrastructure. Soccer, was a sport that did not need complicated courts like basketball or tennis and only needed an open field. Dublin United was able to unite a relatively small community, and allow the kids to play organized sports at a young age when other sports were not organized or capable to be supported by the community.

 

A Pioneer in Gender Equality

Early on, Dublin United created a separate girls program, something ahead of its time. The girls program was created in 1973. Tawny Yambrovich, who played on the original 1973 team when she was 10 years old, remembers hearing from multiple women her age that they didn’t play soccer as children because it wasn’t available. Later as a teenager, she was able to play with girls soccer teams from around the area. Additionally, Yambrovich credits her experiences with soccer for influencing her techniques that she used for coaching the DUSL U8 team for a year. Yambrovich stated, “Dublin United has had a huge positive impact on the relationship between girls and sports.” She added that during her time in school, girls had to wear dresses as part of the dress code and were discouraged from competing in physical or athletic activities, but Dublin United introduced a different perspective, empowering the girls with athletic excellence even when it may not have been socially acceptable.

 

Helping the Youth

Dublin United is not only important for the community as a competitive team to take pride in, but it also helps the youth and kids in the community to learn and develop. The organization has been and still is committed to the growth and development of their players not only in a soccer standpoint, but also to helping them grow in character and “life skills”. This is evident through their commitment to showcasing their players for the soccer skills and achievements and activities outside of soccer. On their social media, they actively showcase what their players and members have been doing such as running charity drives and encouraging academic excellence. On a personal level, players agree in the impact that Dublin United has had on their lives.

 

Kaveh Hodjat, who was been playing for Dublin United for five years, thanks Dublin United for teaching him to fight hardship and learn to enjoy winning. He said, “Dublin United and playing soccer with them taught me how you deal with things in the game reflects on how you deal with challenges in life. If you are losing and you want to get subbed out, I think it shows a lot about you, but my coaches showed me that when you are down, you have to come back and which reflects on how I deal with any challenge now.”

 

Jacob Sommer, who has played for Dublin United for nine years, is also thankful for what Dublin United has done for him. He expressed “The coaches especially this year’s coach was helpful, training me and helping me to be the best person I could be in soccer and outside of soccer.”

 

Many people credit DUSL to helping them hone their soccer skills year-round. Kevin Liu added, “Most people on the Dublin High School soccer team playing for Dublin High School in the winter but also play for Dublin United during the fall and spring seasons.”

 

Continued Success

Dublin United is successful in two fronts, winning tournaments as well as hosting them. DUSL hosts two tournaments a year, the Fall Classic and the Dublin Shamrock. The Fall Classic, which started in the 1990s, is their premier tournament that attracts 90 teams from around the area. The Dublin Shamrock, which began in the 1970s, is attended by a staggering 110 teams and is their tournament for younger and newer players. These tournaments attract teams out of state as well as from across California. Dublin United has and is fielding successful teams that compete in the NorCal Premier League with neighboring clubs. This includes success in the former Al Caffodio League as well as continue success in their current teams in the Nor Cal Premier league. This includes recently the 1999 Boys Premier team going undefeated in the Spring League. The future is also bright with a steadily growing player base, DUSL is no doubt a top notch sports club in the region. Dublin United has had a successful first 50 years and hopefully another successful 50 years will come!

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