This Month in Marin FC summarizes the month’s news and notes in a series of ‘high-level’ briefs from various club constituents.  In this edition:

In This Edition

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From the President

Evan CrossHere are a few highlights and news tidbits from the past month:

As I advance into the role of club president, I am both thrilled and humbled.  Thrilled because the club is stronger than ever. We are supported by extraordinary coaches and staff. Across the County we have earnest supporters and community partners. Anchoring it all, we enjoy a deep and talented player pool. I’m humbled because for a club of our size, our workings are as complex as some astounding machine replete with countless levers and knobs and gauges. As we rumble along, the machine needs constant attention and care, and occasionally there comes a great burst of steam or alarm whistle.  It’s all great fun and I’m excited to be working with our board, parent clubs and the broader community dedicated to elite player development.

With that in mind, here are a few items from inside the machine you may be interested to learn more about.

Office Hours

My first initiative as president was to invite all team managers and treasurers to share their insights about Marin FC. These “office hours” sessions were held over several November weekends, and I learned a tremendous amount.  Multiple issues were raised, but to everyone’s credit, each challenge was supported with an idea, solution or suggestion. Some ideas were so thought provoking, that I decided to schedule follow-up monthly board workshops to gather critical personnel and volunteers, and turn good ideas into action. We started with November’s workshop focusing on our Financial Aid Program, but other areas soon to be discussed include fields, uniforms and equipment, the referee program, and fundraising. November was a time for listening, and I thank everyone that contributed.  When we listen, we learn, and I will continue to do so. Everyone should feel free to find me on a sideline or in the stands, or drop me an email at


Another area of early focus for me was reaching out to new volunteers to help in the joyous effort of fielding our program and advancing our youth.  I’m happy to report that roles are being filled as we speak, but we are certainly in need of more help. Teymy Bahmani is stepping up to help with communications and social media strategy. Julie Shepherd is customizing and delivering our injury prevention and strength training program. Janet Pero is spearheading our equipment and uniforms needs. Geoff Shepherd is coordinating our Positive Coaching Alliance membership commitment. Jake Miller and Marilou McFarlane are teaming up on our alumni outreach. And others have raised their hands to help with events and our college recruiting efforts. If you have an interest and the capacity to join the team, please drop me an email at

New to the Board

In addition to his volunteer efforts noted above, the Marin FC board unanimously approved Geoff Shepherd this past month as Marin FC’s board representative for North Marin United and the Novato Youth Soccer Association. Geoff has served on the NYSA board for the past six years and brings a wealth of energy and creative thinking to the club.  Please join me in welcoming him to the team.

Winter Break and 2017

The club is accelerating its planning efforts just as several of our teams go on winter hiatus for high school play.  We will be launching a new training program that we hope will attract and help develop prospective Marin FC players from across our Alliance clubs. These “Alliance Trainings” will occur in December and January, gathering ’06, ’05, ’04 and ’03 birth year players from our parent clubs to prepare them for the Marin FC experience. Concurrently, tryout preparations for our 2017-18 teams are well under way. ’06 through ’03 birth year tryouts will occur on 2/25, 2/26 and 3/4, and registration for those sessions is open on our website. As in previous years, our older players will hold their tryout sessions in late April and early May. Be sure to check the website for the most current updates and information.

Website & Newsletter

Did I just mention the website? It’s the place to get the club’s most current information, so check in often … In fact, I recommend keeping an eye on that space, new year … new things, I’m just saying.

Stay safe and dry this winter season, whether you’re on the pitch or cheering from the sidelines.

Evan Cross, President

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From the Director of Coaching

Josh Kalkstein

Here are a few highlights and news tidbits from the past month:

A Busy Month

This past month was particularly hectic for several of our teams.  High school soccer kicked off on November 7, our red teams finished Premier League play, and our blue teams participated in three different College Showcase events up and down the state.

The weekend of November 4/5/6, our B03 Blue and B02 Blue teams traveled to Los Angeles to participate in the US Development Academy Regional Showcase at the Stub Hub Center, the LA Galaxy’s and US National team’s training facility.  This proved to be a fantastic opportunity for our kids and we received lots of great feedback from those in attendance in terms of individual performances and our general style of play.

The weekend of November 19/20, our older blue teams participated in the NPL Showcase, with the boys traveling to Modesto and the girls to Davis.  Despite trying conditions, both events were well attended on the college front, and our teams exceled on the field.

This past weekend, a few of our teams traveled to San Diego for the Thanksgiving Showcase.  Despite a rain out on Sunday, several players attracted good college coach attention in the remaining two days of play.

Across the board this was a full and productive month for all involved.

– Josh Kalkstein, DOC

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From the Director of Development

Ian Tonks

Year-End Giving

As we approach year’s end, a time traditionally devoted to gratitude and generosity, we thank all our supporters and ask you to consider making an additional tax-deductible contribution to the club in support of the following field, event, and coach development initiatives.  More.

Eloi Run

Our 2017 Eloi Run website is live.  Click here to visit our new homepage and to register to run or walk.

Got Team News?

To share a game summary or tournament recap:

  • Go to
  • Scroll down the right side of page navigation menu under Seasonal Information
  • Click Submit an Article
  • Enter your contact information and article summary.  Match the ID and submit

Edited posts will be added to our website homepage “latest news” section and posted on our Facebook page within 48 hours.  We encourage you to use this tool to keep all in the club informed re: individual and team accomplishments.  A big thanks to those of you that use it already.

– Ian Tonks, Director of Development

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From the Alumni

This month’s alumni article features an interview with North Carolina senior, Darcy McFarlane.  Here’s what she had to say:

Tell our readers a little about yourself.

I grew up in Mill Valley with my parents, Marilou and Craig, and my older sister Kelly, who also played at UNC. I went to Branson where I played soccer, tennis and a little basketball.

Darcy McFarlane

Recollect your Marin FC experience if you will.

I had a great Marin FC experience and keep in touch with many of my old teammates and coaches. The FC teams I’ve played for have always been so much fun and competitive, and I loved how all the different age groups got along and trained together. Tyler Gottschalk was my coach for the last couple of years, and he was truly awesome. He really helped me develop as a player and prepare for the transition to college soccer. He continues to keep up with my games, and checks in periodically to see how I’m doing.  He may also be becoming to our playoff game this Friday!

Darcy McFarlane

What other schools did you look at and why did you ultimately pick North Carolina?

I looked mainly at east coast schools for soccer, and my final decision was between Penn and UNC. Ultimately, it’s always been a dream to play at Carolina, so the opportunity to play for Anson Dorrance and the dynasty he’s built was something I simply couldn’t pass up. Also, Chapel Hill is an amazing college town, and we have a rich family tradition with the school, what with my mom going there, my sister going there, and having family close by.  I spent many of my formative years there watching games, so in some ways it’s my home away from home. Relatedly, my older sister Kelly had such a great experience athletically and academically there that I knew I’d have the same.  Getting to play with her for a year was as a bonus, and so much fun.

What were some of the adjustments you had to make to successfully transition from club to collegiate ball?

The college game is faster than club, and the players are more talented and athletic. In club, I had more freedom to dribble and attack, whereas my role here at UNC is decidedly more defensive. My job is to keep it simple and set an appropriate game rhythm, while being somewhat defensive-minded. I’ve always enjoyed tackling and defending, so I actively embraced this new role.

Summarize your collegiate soccer career to date.  What have been some of the highlights?

It took me a while to earn any playing time during my freshman year, but getting to play side-by-side in the midfield with my older sister during an Elite Eight game vs UCLA was a particularly memorable moment. I got to watch her start and dominate as a holding midfielder her senior year while I was a freshman, and learned a lot by example in a role that I would ultimately take on after she graduated. We had a gritty team my sophomore year that finished co-regular season champions of the ACC, a very competitive conference. My junior year, we probably had the most talented team during my tenure, and were ranked #1 in the country for the first half of the season. Unfortunately, I tore my ACL midway through the season, and a couple of teammates also went down with season-ending injuries, so it was a tough campaign all-around. Coming into my senior year, I was so motivated to get back on the field with my teammates and to be a team leader. It’s been a fun and incredible year so far, and we’ve worked hard for every positive result we’ve achieved. We have great team chemistry and love playing with one another, so it’s been a privilege to have extended our season to this final weekend. Being here at the Final Four in the Bay Area is great, but we’re all focused and ready to go on Friday vs. the #1 seeded West Virginia.

What have you learned as a collegiate athlete that you’ll take into post collegiate life?

I have learned so much, but more than anything else, I’ll take the self-discipline I’ve learned as a student-athlete into my post collegiate life. To get better as a soccer player, it requires a tremendous amount of discipline to stick to summer workouts on your own when no one is watching, and to ignore the many social distractions that come with being a college student. I’ve also learned how to manage my time well, to balance the rigorous demands of academics and athletics.

From athletics to academics.  What are you studying?

I am majoring in Business Administration and minoring in Spanish for the Professions.

Any interests outside of soccer?

I’ve really enjoyed the involvement I’ve had with community organizations during my time at Carolina. I think student-athletes have a special platform to make a difference in the community so I’ve enjoyed coordinating clinics, fundraisers and hospital visits with my teammates. I’m also very interested in politics and have been involved in leadership groups such as student government, as well as the Student-Athlete Advisory Council.

Any thoughts about life after college?

I’m graduating a semester early in just a few weeks, which hasn’t really hit me yet thanks to the distraction of post-season play. It’s bittersweet, as I’ve loved my time at Carolina but am excited for the next chapter of my life to begin.  Still, I know that the many friendships and relationships I’ve built will be with me forever no matter where I end up. I’m planning on trying out for a few pro teams this spring and then to play for a season or two before heading up to Seattle where I start working for Microsoft next year.

The Marin FC alumni community is alive and well.  Do you keep in touch with many of your former teammates?

Kristi Cascio was my Marin FC teammate and neighbor in Mill Valley growing up, and McKenzie Clark was on the FC team older than me but was one of my best friends and teammates at Branson, so I keep up with both as often as I can. I also keep up with the Bettinger girls and some of my other teammates from time to time.

Anyone you want to thank or recognize at Marin FC?

The Marin FC community is so special and supportive. I want to thank all the players, parents and coaches who have reached out to me throughout my college days. Of course, I want to thank my coach, Tyler Gottschalk, and my high school coach, Tom Ryan, as well as Rob Funes, Josh Kalkstein, Jason Clark and Jason Werner, all of whom coached me at some point and helped me to be the player I am today.

Before I let you go, give us a little insight into your interests and passions.  Name three books on your book shelf, three gadgets you couldn’t live without, and three artists/bands in your IPod.

For books, Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E Frankl, David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell, and Grit by Angela Duckworth.  For gadgets, my iPhone and my Microsoft Surface Book.  And for artists and bands, Vance Joy, The Lumineers, Michael Jackson, and Miley Cyrus (sorry that’s 4).

How can our readers follow you if they’d like to track your athletic activities?

They can follow our team at

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From the Referee Program Coordinator

First and foremost, we want to thank the 185 players that embraced this year’s referee commitment and managed to referee almost 900 games out of the targeted 1050 games.  The ’03 and ’02 age groups exceeded their target allocation.  Unfortunately, the ’01 age group fell slightly short of their target.   Thank you to all participating players, on behalf of our scholarship fund and the many local soccer communities you served.  It is very much appreciated.

About 35% of you still have some games to complete and we will be reaching out to you directly, as well as via your team manager, to ensure you complete the assignment before the season is over. A referee status summary for each team has been sent to each manager.  Please check with your manager or team referee coordinator regarding your referee status.  Also, remember to report all your games via the Marin FC referee reporting form.

This is also a reminder that all Financial Assistance players need to turn in the proceeds from six games to Marin FC to receive their team fee contribution.  Please do so before 12/31/2016 so we can release the funds this winter.

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Last Month’s Poll Question

In last month’s poll question we asked, “Which MLS team will lift the MLS Cup on December 10 this year?” A tally of responses follows:

Answer % Votes
Toronto FC 60%
Los Angeles Galaxy 13.3%
Seattle Sounders FC 6.7%
New York City 4.4%
FC Dallas 4.4%
Colorado Rapids 4.4%