Cy Strickler began coaching his daughter's team in 1980 and immediately realized that boys youth teams were routinely given more emphasis and resources. This led him to become a strong advocate for girls’ youth soccer. Just two years later, he founded the Tophat Soccer Club, named after the Tophat Fighter Squadron in which he served. Over the years, that club has developed into an outstanding women's soccer program.
At the state level, Strickler served on the GYSA Athena Committee from 1986 until 1998 and was the committee's chairperson from 1988 through 1998. He became the GYSA Registrar in 2004. At the USYSA level, Cy served as Region III Representative from 2001 through 2003.
From the inception of his career until his induction into the Georgia Soccer Hall of Fame in 2006, Strickler coached three State Championship teams, 35 Tophat Soccer Club teams won State Championships, five won Regional Championships, two were Regional runners-up, three placed third in USYSA Region III, 100 Tophat Soccer Club youth players played at the college level and three played at the national level in the Women's United Soccer Association.
Under Cy's leadership, the Tophat Soccer Club’s concentrated on player and team development and fostered in each player and team the self-esteem and love of team sport that reflect excellence in achievement. Presenting the opportunity to so many young girls to form and pursue lifetime goals and strive for and achieve personal excellence is the core of Cy's achievement.