Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Soccer Joy

What a memorable summer of soccer it was. It was a turning point for both Charlotte and Finn, as they both moved up in their age divisions, which means growth all around. This is Finn's second year. Because of his birthday, he had to wait until last year to play when he turned 5, whereas most of his teammates were starting at age 4. Fast forward to this year. His teammates are as young as 4 and he is now turning 6 during this soccer season. Finn was at least a whole head taller than almost all of his teammates. He was dominating the field which is not really what the game of soccer is about. So, we asked to move him up to the next age category during the last three weeks of soccer. The coaches on both teams were agreeable to this and really wanted the best for Finn. WOW. What a difference that made! Some solid skills were being taught and he was picking them up fast. He had an opportunity to put his skills to the test and played a game against Bayfield which he was thrilled about. Here he is in action...

Charlotte was really apprehensive about joining soccer again this year. Part of the reason is that she is homeschooled, and all the other kids (with the exception of one other teammate) go to school together in Washburn. Also, it was getting a little, well, boring for her. I could tell she needed a challenge. Last year, she was on U-8, and the kids learned a little bit of skill, but they were still playing games like "Sharks and Minows." Nothing wrong with that game. Really. But she was ready to learn some hard skills, and we knew this. We knew she would get some really good coaching, as she would be preparing to play games against neighboring teams. So, we had that talk. "Just give it one more try. Come on... we think you'll really like it this year. Please?" So, she dragged her feet a little... until she got to the first practice... and her coach was totally cool... and two girls from the high school were the assistant coaches... Oh, and she got a new red jersey that is hers now ~ number 21. Yeah, she was convinced. She was ready. So, throughout the season, the coach did a great job of teaching the girls about all the different positions on the field. He rotated them during all of the games. Charlotte discovered that she was not afraid to get out in front of the net to stop a ball. She really enjoyed being the goalie. She was pretty good at it.

Tonight was Charlotte's last night of practice. Their team ended the season with their only win being against the parents tonight, 3-2. I gotta say, that was just a total blast to play the girls. I found out I am way out of shape and was completely winded during the first two minutes of play. Oh, and I took one in the gut. Charlotte was so proud of her new nickname. The coach dubbed her Charlotte "The Wall" Steckart. She was also awarded Most Improved Player along with her friend Sophia.

~Sigh~ I'm one proud mama. I can't wait for next year when I'll have three kids playing at one time. Yes, Piper will finally get her turn to play too.

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