Northwest United Players Make Their Way on to EPD Rosters

Congratulations Aidan Pinson and Maxwell Stultz!

This season, Northwest United had the pleasure of seeing the success of two players earn spots on EPD rosters for their respective age groups.

The Elite Player Development program is designed as the “training ground for Washington’s most elite youth soccer players.” Comprised of nearly 430 talented boys and girls, ages 9 to 17, the EPD coaching staff offers the best development opportunities possible for each player, focusing on the technical and tactical skills combined with the necessary creativity to compete at such high levels. The goal is to create “a complete package that best suits overall soccer development.” To be selected for an EPD roster is an extremely high honor.

Maxwell Stultz, ’01 Premier, and Aidan Pinson, ’03 Premier, have both had an exciting season with the privilege of competing on their EPD teams.

Stultz currently plays for Coach Conner Moe on the BU14/’01 Premier Team. “I have not met many players his age who work as hard or spend as much time training as Max does. His success is 100% of his own,” Coach Moe says of Stultz.

Maxwell began his soccer career at a young age with the Mount Vernon San Carlos League. After moving into Northwest United, he says he has grown up as a player, and that all phases of his game have grown. He gives praise and thanks to every coach he has worked with so far. When asked what he has learned most with Coach Moe this season, he says he is “learning the importance of all aspects of the game. The technical side and understanding the game are just as important as fitness.” And Coach Moe has seen exactly that: “Max has the special ability to play multiple positions because of his understanding of the game, and his athleticism.  This has allowed him to be so consistent.”

Aidan Pinson, 11, has been playing up an age group on Coach Kristian Powell’s BU12/’03 Premier Team this season.

Pinson has nothing but great things to say about his coach. He talks about how much he has grown since being with Coach Powell, and the confidence he has received from having the opportunity to play at that level. He says that this year he has seen more chances at the goal than previous years, and scoring goals are his favorite (obviously!). “Coach Powell has us do lots of skill drills, and that helped me improve,” says Pinson, “I had to play defense this year, so I learned how to be a defender and be a very well rounded player.”

“Aidan is a great talent. He is very skillful on the ball and a lot of speed and control to match it,” Coach Powell says of one of his youngest players.

Last August, Maxwell attended the EPD open tryouts. He was thrilled to learn that he was selected to the player pool, and then later earned his spot on the EPD ’01 boys travel roster for the ODP (Olympic Development Program) Region IV Championships. This region includes all 16 western states. In early January, he traveled down to Phoenix, Arizona where he saw substantial playtime. His team is incredibly good – being the second best team in the tournament.

Aidan just recently went through tryouts back in November and December and received the great news that he was selected for the ’04 boys roster quite recently. His EPD season is just beginning, and he will attend a large tournament sometime in the late Spring.

When asked what the EPD opportunity means to them, both boys are just incredibly grateful to have the chance to play at such a high level with other top players. “The coaching is really good, and we work hard at trainings. I really enjoy that,” says Stultz.

You can bet that these boys’ soccer careers will not end any time soon. They each have long term goals of playing D1 College soccer and working towards playing for the Seattle Sounders. At the rate they’re going, they could be there in no time! “Max is someone who will be successful in whatever he chooses to do because of his determination and professionalism,” says Coach Moe. “Aidan puts everything in to training and games. He has very good intensity,” says Coach Powell.

We are incredibly proud of the work these boys have put into their season. Their determination to be the best they can be is admirable, and we wish them the best of luck as they continue on this year!