About Us Contact Us

NJ Youth Soccer Hosts ODP Success Stories Seminar

Yael Averbuch, Nick LaBrocca, Madison Tiernan and John Loiodice Participated as Panelists

East Windsor, N.J. (June 11, 2019) ― The New Jersey Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (ODP) recently hosted an ODP Success Stories Seminar at Rider University, where attendees were treated to an insightful panel of former ODP players that included Yael Averbuch, Nick LaBrocca, Madison Tiernan and John Loiodice.

"Our goal for this event was to take the audience through the minds of some of New Jersey's finest talents, and to highlight that the road to the top is littered with obstacles and adversity. I think we definitely achieved that," said James Galanis, New Jersey ODP Technical Director. "The speakers were open and honest about the impact the ODP had on their lives. It was incredible to hear their stories and exactly why we are working so hard to continue to inspire our ODP players to believe in their dreams."

During the event, the panelists each spoke about their personal experiences with ODP, as well as explaining how participating in ODP helped them set the stage for their careers. They also addressed both the achievements and setbacks that they encountered along their journeys, stating that both were equally as impactful for them. The program started with the athletes providing background information on their careers, and the second half of the seminar was opened up to a Q/A session.

The parents and players in attendance found the program to be very insightful, which was noted by 2002 New Jersey ODP goalkeeper Brett Hintz.

"Hearing these former ODP players tell their stories gave me an added sense of will that I can reach a high level of success in this game," Hintz remarked. "It also showed me that there is an accessible pathway to get there. Continuing my soccer career is definitely a goal of mine, and this seminar gave me even more motivation to strive for that."

NJ Youth Soccer has officially set the dates for its 2019 ODP Tryouts, with four sessions planned on July 27-28 and August 3-4. Registration and further information regarding ODP Tryouts can be found online: ODP Tryouts Registration & Details

For all of the latest news regarding New Jersey ODP, make sure to follow our official ODP page on Facebook. To find out more information about New Jersey ODP, visit the program online or contact us directly at odp@njyouthsoccer.com.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON ODP SUCCESS STORIES PANELISTS

After playing in the New Jersey ODP and NJYS system as a youth player, Yael Averbuch went on to star at the University of North Carolina. While in Chapel Hill, she won two NCAA National Championships, made an NCAA record 105 consecutive starts and eventually had her number 17 jersey retired after her senior season. Averbuch then become the first-ever college draft pick for Sky Blue FC, winning the 2009 Women's Professional Soccer championship in her rookie season. Internationally, she competed for the U.S. Women's National Team at every level and has proven to be a true leader off the field, currently serving as the Union President for the NWSL Players Association.

Nick Labrocca played high school, club soccer and ODP in New Jersey before going on to having a three-time All-Big East career at Rutgers University. From there, LaBrocca was selected by the Colorado Rapids in the 2007 MLS SuperDraft. His 10-year MLS career included being named to the 2011 MLS All-Star Game, where he played against Manchester United. LaBrocca has played for the U.S. U-20 and U-23 National Teams, and he was called up to the senior national team camp in 2008 ahead of a FIFA World Cup Qualifier against Guatemala.

John Loiodice is a New Jersey soccer product who developed by playing ODP and is now with the program as a coach. He is in his sixth season on the Rowan Men's Soccer coaching staff, also serving as the Recruiting Coordinator and Director of Social Media & Game Day Operations. A 2010 graduate of Rowan, Loiodice is also the head boys' soccer coach at Triton Regional High School. He was a two-year starter at Rowan, an All-American at Brookdale Community College in 2008 and was named both a 2009 adidas and NJCAA Second-Team All-American.

Madison Tiernan played high school soccer at Eastern Regional High School, earning several accolades. She was a standout with New Jersey ODP during that time, winning a pair of ODP National Championships. After high school, she attended Rutgers University from 2013 to 2016 and played 88 matches for the Scarlet Knights, scoring 25 goals and notching 16 assists. Tiernan also won several honors at college, including her being named the South Jersey Soccer Coaches Association (SJSCA) College Player of the Year. Tiernan later became the 24th overall pick in the 2017 NWSL College Draft, selected by Sky Blue FC. She is currently in her third professional season with Sky Blue FC, where she has played more than 40 matches and scored five goals.