"Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I assure you it's much more serious than that." - Bill Shankly
New Features

A Physical Training (PT) data base that was developed by a good friend, and former Navy Seal trainer, will come on-line and feature the fitness regimes that he used. Good core work focus and lots of functional and straight forward resistance training.

Reading List

Some texts and articles that have provided solid knowledge over the years.

  • Periodization - Tudor Bompa
  • Triathlete"s Training Bible - Joel Friel
  • Total Immersion - Terry Laughlin
  • Eat Right to Train Right - Chris Carmichael

Coaching Background
Mark Wholey - I've been formally involved in soccer since 7 years old, beginning here in the old South County Jaycees Soccer League (SCYSC's old name in the early years). I was fortunate to be a member of teams that won the RI House League State Cup, RI State Cup, represented RI at the Eastern Regional Championships, appeared three consecutive years in the RIIL High School State Finals, won a RIIL High School State Championship, Captained my High School Squad, played competitively up through Division I at the University of Hartford and played at the Catholic University of America. I continued playing soccer competitively until 2005 for teams in Western Massachusetts, New York City, and here in Rhode Island. I have been coaching Competitive/Travel and recreational soccer for both boys and girls in SCYSC, and had coached kids in various camps for a number of years before that. I look forward to working with the players, challenging them to work hard to grow as players and most importantly, to enjoy “the beautiful game”.


  • E License – 2014
  • YM2 – 2013
  • YM1 - 2010

Coaching History

  • SCYSC Competitive – 2010-present
  • SCYSC Recreational – 2007-present
  • Soccer Camp Coach – 1989-93
  • Individual Personalized Training

Player History

  • Casey’s Men’s Soccer Club, RI – 2004-05
  • Central Park Rangers FC, NY – 2000-01
  • Western United FC, MA – 1997-99
  • Catholic University, DC – 1991
  • University of Hartford, CT – 1988-90
  • Narragansett High School, RI – 1984-87
  • South County Sting, RI – 1983-91
  • Casey’s Travel Team, RI – 1981-82
  • South County Jaycees Soccer, RI – 1978-87

Coaching Philosophy
Player Development Goals

The 9-12 year old age block is an exciting and challenging period of development for boys and girls. The range of developmental stages that children are in during this block creates a wide range of skills and ability among our players. They are growing in many ways, some outwardly obvious, some not so.

As a result, I personally try to approach coaching this age group with a few primary considerations in mind. The first among these is ensuring that the players are enjoying their time on the pitch, and are playing in a safe and instructive environment.

The range of skills means the instruction needs to be flexible enough to allow those kids working on rudimentary skills to have the time to develop while those who are more advanced remain challenged and do not grow bored and restless. One way we achieve this is with proper staffing from our adult volunteers. Having a number of coach’s assistants available to the players allows me the opportunity to break out learning into smaller groups to better individualize technical training.

The primary goal of player development is that each child is able to improve his/her soccer skills according to his/her own growth curve, remaining safe, invested and interested.

Core Coaching Values

My core coaching values are straightforward and simple. I believe every child deserves the chance to play and improve his skills. I believe that children learn best in a positive, reinforcing environment absent of negative criticism and harsh words. I believe players need to be challenged continually with training that pushes them to exceed “yesterday’s” standard. I believe that a life-long love of the game is developed through a positive experience each day you play or watch the game. I believe children learn a great deal through the behaviors of the adults around them and those adults must model what they expect the children to perform.

Player Expectations – The 3 Rs

The training philosophy for the U12 age group is a combined approach of teaching and reinforcing technical training, initiating tactical training and including sufficient fitness training to allow the team to compete for the full duration of the match. That breaks down to focus areas on individual foot skills and fundamentals training for technique, small sided exercises that focus on ball movement and player movement without the ball for tactical training, and regular inclusion of running and speed work to increase fitness.

Respect the Coach

The coaches are present to teach you new individual technical skills. The coaches are present to teach you tactical skills as a team. The coaches are present to coordinate the group as a unit. When a coach is speaking to you or the team, respect the coach. Your eyes are on the coach. Your ears are on the coach. Don’t be distracted.

Respect the Team

The team works as a unit. No individual is better than a well-trained team. The team supports each other on and off the field. Never express any disrespect towards other team members. If a team member makes a mistake, you work harder to fix the mistake.

Respect the Game

The game of soccer has rules, written and unwritten. Always respect the rules of the game and the way we approach the game. South County Youth Soccer Club has an excellent reputation and we, as a team, are representatives of the club. We arrive prepared and on time, ready to practice or to play on game day.

Parent Expectations

The parental and family commitment to soccer for your young child can be significant. The expectation is that if you are committing to the education and development of your child, you will take that seriously. That means you are part of a support team that has roles and responsibilities, as well. As mentioned above in my coaching philosophy, children learn through modeled behavior. That modeling is strongest by the parent of the player. My expectations for parents are that you trust my judgment as the coach. My expectation is that you support your child and the team, bringing your child to practice on time, providing verbal support and exhibiting good sportsmanship around the team. My expectation is that you allow your child to enjoy the sport and keep a reasonable perspective on the results of matches. Winning and losing are not the most critical aspects of youth sports. Encourage your child to also keep an appropriate perspective. Be sure the player remains focused on his/her academic education. For most players this will persist longer than their competitive career. Enjoy the sport, the team, and the program, and get involved as a volunteer.