PO Box 248, Brainerd, MN 56401

Frequently Asked Questions

What you should know about Brainerd Blast Soccer!

How do the levels in soccer work?

Soccer in MN utilized groupings of two year increments, similar to hockey, into the 90’s.  Likely due to soccer’s growth in the metropolitan areas, levels were narrowed down to individual age groupings.  For U8, U9 and U10 age levels, there are two competitive levels – gold and maroon with maroon being the higher level.  We generally play gold with exception of Blast Evolution Select tournaments.  For U11 through U17, there are four competitive levels; C3, C2, C1 and Premier, with Premier being the highest.  For the longest time, LAYSA participated at the C3 level 90% of the time.  Over the past 6 years, we have progressed to the point where we are around 50% of our teams playing C3 and 50% playing C2.  In order to play at the C1 level at tournaments, you have to play in C1 league play or play at a high level in C2 competition for many years.  To play Premier, you must play at a high level in C1 to prove yourself.  C3 and C2 can be self-designated.  C1 and Premier levels must be earned.

What is the difference between US Club Soccer and Minnesota Youth Soccer Association (MYSA)?

These are both sanctioning bodies for soccer in MN.  You must sanction your program through one or the other (or both) to play in tournaments and league play.  LAYSA is US Club Soccer because they allow more flexibility in moving players around during the season.  US Club does not have league play while MYSA does.

What is league play and why does LAYSA participate in tournaments over league play?

LAYSA competed in league play for a long time before moving to tournament play.  This consisted of playing 10-12 games against teams from the MYSA NW District including Crookston, Thief River Falls, Detroit Lakes, Alexandria, Fergus Falls and others.  You travel on a Tuesday or Thursday and play one game and travel home for half of your games.  As LAYSA grew in size and level of play, the competition rarely had teams at all levels to compete against ours and the games more often than not, lacked competitiveness.  For this reason, LAYSA moved to the tournament format guaranteeing us better competition at all age levels.  The trade-off was weekends for weekdays but teams would get in 3-5 games per weekend.  Recently, MYSA NW District has moved their league games to the weekends solidifying our decision to play tournaments.  LAYSA still continues to pick up scrimmages against St. Cloud, Bemidji, Little Falls and other programs a little closer to home for extra games.  MYSA does have another District LAYSA could potentially compete in, we would have to petition to be moved.  This is the Northern Disctrict including Little Falls, White Bear Lake, Chisago Lakes, North Metro, MapleBrook, Cloquet and others.  Petitioning in is a longshot due to the cities teams already concerned about travel time.

How does LAYSA form teams?

LAYSA forms teams during April after registration has closed.  Teams are formed in age groups of U9, U10, U11, U12, U13, U14, U15, U16, U17.  Age groups may be combined if necessary.  

Tryouts may be needed for the age groups to determine the players to move up a level.


Can my player play up with their grade?

If your child has a summer birthday and playing up an age level will allow them to play with players in their same grade in school, you may request for them to play up.  There is no guarantee, but if roster numbers allow, we will honor the request.

How big are the fields and how many players play on a team?

Unlike most other stick and ball sports, soccer teams grow as they get larger and it is more important in soccer than other sports to not only retain numbers, but increase them as time progresses. 

U8-U10 plays 7v7, a team can carry a max roster of 12 players.  The field size for this age level is generally 30-40 yards wide x 40-60 yards long.

U11-U12 plays 9v9, a team can carry a max roster of 14 players.  The field size for this age level is generally 40-50 yards wide x 60-80 yards long.

U13 and up plays 11v11, a team can carry a max roster of 18 players.  The field size for this age level is generally 50-60 yards wide x 100-120 yards long.

What if I have concerns about the answers above?

We are here because of you.  We want to know about your concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact any board member with a concern.  We do not always get it right, we will not always please everyone.  However, will provide the best opportunity for the greatest number of our members.