North Iowa Soccer Club: History

Formation of the North Iowa Soccer Club
The beginnings of an organized club soccer program in north-central Iowa can be traced back to the efforts of Jim McDermott, who organized a number of kids from the Clear Lake area into teams in the mid 90’s. The Clear Lake Condors were restricted to play in the Iowa Games, held once each summer and winter, since they were not affiliated with a national soccer organization. That restriction, coupled with the desire to play more competitive games than what local Park and Recreation departments could offer, stimulated the birth of the North Iowa Soccer Club. Involvement from Mason City and Charles City rapidly fell into place because of the growth that their Parks and Recreation departments were experiencing, coupled with the benefits associated with an increase in community spirit associated with inter-city competitions.

The North Iowa Soccer Club was officially formed in the Fall of 1998 and affiliated with the Iowa Youth Soccer Association (IYSA).   X teams from Clear Lake, Y from Mason City, and Z from Charles City competed during a five-week season. One of the highlights of the fall season was a bus trip to Ames to watch the Iowa State women’s soccer team play Oklahoma.

The fall season was followed by a very successful winter league that was held at the north-Iowa fairgrounds.   The kids endured some very cold “weather” on the fairground’s campus since the building they played in was not heated. Despite the cold, the kids had a lot of fun and gained valuable experience. The North Iowa Soccer Club was the only league in Iowa to be sanctioned by the IYSA.

The spring of 1999 saw continued growth in the league. Three of the club’s teams participated in the American Cup—the premier tournament in Iowa for recreational teams. The Clear Lake U–14 coed team won the gold medal at the tournament.

The second year of the North Iowa Soccer Club has started as successfully as the first year left off. Enrollment in the club has surpassed last fall’s enrollment, sponsors have purchased jerseys for the majority of the teams in the club, and over half of the club’s teams have competed in tournaments across the state. Indeed, the future of the North Iowa Soccer Club looks very bright.

Mason City Soccer Program Exceeds Milestone
Participation in Mason City's soccer programs reached a milestone during the 1999 season. For the first time in Mason City history, enrollment in the North Iowa Soccer Club, the YMCA, and the Mason City Park and Recreation Department's programs exceeded 1000. Mason City has seen soccer participation grow by over 30% per year over the past four years.

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