Saturday, September 29, 2012

Soccer in Steamboat - A Lesson Learned

Fall color on Rabbit Ears Pass
I've been helping out with my 11 year old son's soccer team for six years now and it's been a lot of fun. Soccer is a great sport because it's a player's game. Once the whistle blows the action is non-stop with little or no interference from the coaches. The players are free to make their own decisions concerning positioning and ball movement. As the boys have grown older, my duties have evolved from tying shoes and wiping noses to shagging balls and picking up cones. Sometimes at practice, if the numbers aren't right, I have to jump into a drill and if I'm lucky I might even get to play in a scrimmage. I think the boys accept me like a teammate, I know I've grown very attached to them.

We recently traveled up over Rabbit Ears Pass and down into Steamboat for a league game. It was a tough first half as our team constructed some good buildups and took great shots, they just couldn't finish. There were near misses, balls hitting the post and great saves by the opposing goalie. Down two to nil, things didn't look good. The guys were upset and frustrated. They were even bickering with each other out on the field. It would have been easy to just shut it down and quit.

At halftime the head coach asked the team to remain calm and stay positive. He urged them to continue working hard and promised good things would happen. It was exciting to watch the boys take techniques perfected at practice and display them during the match. A spectacular second half ended with a five to three victory. Hopefully the lessons they learn on the pitch will translate to success in the real world. Life is also full of rejection and failure, I know, but I witnessed something magical that morning in Steamboat. Something that proved what I already believe. I like being around those kids because they inspire me. I will never give up.
We took some good shots but just couldn't finish

A tough first half ended down 2-0

A spectacular second half was capped by a 5-3 victory

Hopefully lessons learned on the pitch will translate to future success

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