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updated: 5/17/2011 10:52 AM

Coach to launch soccer club in Hawthorn Woods

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Submitted by Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club

Tom Chmela, co-owner of Kits Sports Center in Lake Zurich and veteran soccer coach, has announced the launch of the Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club.

According to Chmela, Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club will begin competition this spring with a U18 boys team, and this summer with U19 and U23 girls team, with plans to grow the organization to a U13-U23 program of top-level boy and girl athletes.

The club will compete in two leagues: the Northern Illinois Soccer League and the Illinois Women's Soccer League.

"We're extremely excited to be bringing an elite soccer club to Hawthorn Woods," Chmela said. "Our goal is to build a multilevel club -- with developmental and elite teams -- so that we meet the needs of all level-skilled soccer players."

The new Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club encourages anyone interested in joining to attend upcoming tryouts for fall 2011-12 soccer season. Tryouts will be held at Heritage Oaks Park on Fairfield Road in Hawthorn Woods. Upcoming dates are as follows:

• U15-U16 Girls: 4-5:30 p.m. Saturday, May 21.

• U17-U18 Girls: 6:30-8 p.m. Thursday, May 19, and 5:30-7 p.m. Saturday, May 21.

• U13-U14 Boys: 5:30-6:30 p.m. Thursday, June 2, and 3-15-4:30 p.m. Saturday, June 4.

• U15-U16 Boys: 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday, May 31, and noon to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, June 4.

• U17-U18 Boys: 6:30-8 p.m. Thursday, June 2, and 1:30-3 p.m. Saturday, June 4.

Well-run elite soccer clubs can be magnets to college programs, and Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club will be no exception.

As a longtime soccer coach in the area, Chmela has earned a reputation for churning out college players. In 2009, 12 of Chmela's players were placed in college programs earning more than $1 million in scholarships.

"Our players will be exposed at national college showcase tournaments and will be well marketed by our coaching staff," Chmela says. "We prepare players and their parents for the recruiting process and we provide insight into the athletic and academic requirements of the process."

Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club fees are $2,100 and include:

• Nine months of training (140-160 hours).

• Two or three two-hour outdoor training sessions per week (Girls: August through November; Boys: March through June).

• One or two indoor training sessions per week at Kits Sports Center (Girls: November through February; Boys: November through March).

• Three or four state tournaments and the state cup.

• Outdoor and indoor leagues.

• Nine-component uniform kit.

According to Chmela, the new club is seeking sponsorship and looking for parent volunteers to support it in a variety of roles such as fundraising, publicity and tournament coordination.

Anyone interested in learning more about Hawthorn Woods Elite Soccer Club should visit or contact Tom Chmela at (847) 909-9729 or