Thanks for your message; we do appreciate the feedback. I can totally understand your concern. I'm on the board for a local lacrosse association and we also put a lot of time into making sure that people looking for lacrosse in Minneapolis end up at our website and playing with our association!
The nice thing about the youth sports directory at SportsEngine.com is it is really not a competitor in the search space. Parents who know what they are looking for will go directly to Google and search. They'll type in lacrosse in Minneapolis (and find us first).
The market this directory fills is for those parents who aren't really sure what they are looking for.
Think of it like the cars.com for sports. Many people that visit cars.com don't know exactly what type of car they are looking for, they just know their budget is $10,000, it must be a 2010 or newer, and it must be within 50 miles. Trying to find a car that way in Google is nearly impossible; it's the same with a sports program. For example, a mom that knows that she is looking for a summer program for her son who is 10 years old that is in their zip code can't go to google and input that information; it just returns non-sensical results.
What SportsEngine.com does is provide a way for parents to browse and discover a program that they may not known existed, while Google helps parents find something more specific. We see SportsEngine.com as a complimentary tool to search–it allows you to capture people that didn't know who you were or what they were looking for.
As the Communications Director for Minneapolis Lacrosse, I will continue to optimize our association in search results for those people who know what they want, but we'll also make sure we have detailed programs set up so that the casual browser can find us too.