Everyone in AYSO has a story, no matter how big or small they are always special! The following people, coming from different backgrounds all have a story to tell of how AYSO has impacted their life. As the largest, oldest national youth soccer program in the United States, with over eight million past members we are bound to have some amazing stories from our beloved AYSO alumni.  AYSO’s alumni include World Cup winners, Olympians and professionals as well as doctors, lawyers and community leaders. No matter their profession, we are proud to call them all a part of our family. Here are their stories – welcome to #MyAYSOStory.



Samantha Conselman
I played all through high school and college and when I graduated moved to Davis, CA for my first career job. During my playing career all my coaches made such a huge impact on my life not just as a player but as a person; so I knew I wanted to give back to my new community by being a coach as well. I signed up to coach in the Summer of 2018 and am now a coach of a U10 girls team in Davis, CA. Being on the coaching side is completely different than the playing side and I continue to learn so much from this sport. Being able to take a step back from the score line and focus on the fun and seeing the girls putting in hard work didn’t come easy at first but it is such an important principle. I love seeing the team make a play or a pass that they couldn’t just one week ago; the game and player development is about progress not perfection. I’m excited moving forward!



Aleksi Hopkins
Grew up playing soccer, was able to witness every 94’ World Cup game at the Rosebowl. I became a youth referee at 12 and refereed in high school for community service. Started coaching regular season again at 25 and the next season I became the coach of a BU12 tourney/select team for R19. 10 years later I now volunteer with SLA 1031 and coach a boys AYSO United team.





Sarah Peterson
I started playing in AYSO when I was 5 years old and played every season until I was 13. I enjoyed playing in the Turkey Tournament with my friends every Thanksgiving and traveling with the All-Star team as well. Playing in AYSO was some of my best memories of hanging around friends and driving to games with my parents on the weekends. I’ve only recently begun to play soccer again after taking a 14 year hiatus from the sport, but I’ve definitely fallen back in love with the beautiful game. I now play every Saturday in a co-ed pickup game and I also played in a Sunday women’s league down in Torrance. I’m currently finishing up nursing school, so it’s a fun stress relief to play on the pitch every weekend again. I’m glad that I have gotten back into the sport and that I’m able to reminiscence about times spent in AYSO with other players I meet because it seems that we all played AYSO growing up.




Alex Cardenas
My role in AYSO has been as a player. I’ve played in Region 677 since I was 6 years old. AYSO has impacted my life in so many ways but mainly it has made me more competitive and has taught me to be a team player. My love for soccer started at AYSO. I love being part of a team, I have made so many lifetime friends. 

I love when the game is close and it gets intense. AYSO soccer has given me so much confidence on the field but also off the field.  Right now my goal is to play soccer for my high school team and my dream is to become a professional soccer player.




Mike Jansta
With 6 kids on 4 teams, and a corporate executive…I quickly learned that I couldn’t coach and do it well without favoring certain kids. Decided I needed to referee early, especially in u7 and u8 where I could ref my own kids while having the best (and most positive!) seat in the house.

Fell in love with positively refereeing in the process and this season my two oldest twins, 11 year old boy-girl fraternal twins qualified as regional referees generating points for their teams, giving me the opportunity to take a mentor position and create more educated players and GREAT referees in the process.