Thursday, May 24, 2007

Season Ends with 4-3 Loss

Street Soccer 945 fell in the quarterfinals of the Sport Connection open league last night in a contest that once again ended with praise from the referee's and spectators and our opponents. It was a well played and hard fought match. It was exciting, our team and our opponents fouled each other and gave each other helping hands when we fell to the ground. There was some physical play and really nice soccer from both teams. Both us and our opponents had genuine respect for each other after the match was over. This has not always been the case, whether it was us letting our emotions get the best of us or our opponents, we have witnessed both. Without having to be reminded after the game we hugged and shook hands with the other team. Our team realized how fair the match was and how hard we played and how we connected passes and acepted that we just did not win. Sometimes that is just the way things go, in life and in soccer. We had no excuses or regrets, we came up short and resolved to come back next season and go for the title that we are creeping ever so closely to. C-White, who had a great training weekend last weekend, played the begining of the game with our hispanic group of Dave, Elmer and Daniel, unfortunatley Daniel injured his shoulder in the first half and so we had to rely on not only White but Pop, Amil and Ray-Ray to play a big roll in this playoff game. Becuase of the nature of Street Soccer 945 and how players find their way onto our team we tend have small groups within the team of players. Our job as coaches is to break those groups fdown and work as whole unit. So you can have a feel for our group let me explain, there is OFT, our music group that hangs together and also shows their dedication to the team by coming to almost every practice. We also have brothers Dave and Michael, who dont make too many practices becuase of school and work, but are always reliable for games. Then there is the Honduran trio who also doesnt come to UMC regualrly because of work schedules and a steadily improving home life. Then there are the old timers like Ray-Ray and Mohammed. We all see each other once a week at games and sometime we click and we win big, but other times Dave and Michael try to play by themselves or Daniel and Elmer arent on the same page as the rest of us, or OFT has one guy tuned in and the others tuned out on the sideline. After bringing us all together last weekend for a Homeless World Cup National Team training weekend we had time to relax and be together without time restrains. We also were able to train and play in a less tense environment that the league games provide. Although we didn't win and there is still much work to be done before we depart for the Homeless World Cup, Street Soccer ended another season with high hopes and encouragement that again next season will be our best yet.

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