Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Overdue Return of the Gratuitous Soccer Dad Post

Many of you (or few of you, for all I know) may have been wondering about the absence of Gratuitous Soccer Dad Posts. Well, Shayna moved up to the Bantam League, and has been playing with 4th, 5th and 6th graders.

And it has not been pretty.

They are 0-3-1, scoring 4 goals in 4 games, three of which came in the tie when they rallied from a 3-0 deficit to snatch a draw from the jaws of defeat.

So the highlights have been few and far between. I'm not impressed with the coaching, but I don't think it's fair to be critical when a) I'm not willing to be a coach myself, and b) I don't know what I'm talking about. I'm only basing my feelings on my observations of other coaches (i.e. ones with winning records). Our coach is at least nice and doesn't yell at the kids like other s.o.b.s

Update: Sunday's game was a heartbreaker. Shayna's Gold team went up to a quick 2-0 lead over a Green team that hadn't lost yet. It was exciting. We were giddy on the sidelines whereas the red-faced parents of our opponents screamed at their players in a way sadly typical of grown-ups who have instilled in their children too much importance on winning.

Then I became one of those parents who blames the officials. Green came back with two goals courtesy of questionable penalty calls. Shayna was the unfortunate goalkeeper that missed the shots that evened the score. She was hampered by playing on the big field with the biggest nets.

However, she was fresh for the second half and she led the assault on the green defense that dominated and resulted in Gold reclaiming the lead.

Then, the officials called another penalty which we are still trying to figure out. The penalty kick was good and the score was tied. The battle ensued in the fourth quarter and it looked like we would be playing to another tie.

Yet, despite the fact that all the other games in the park had ended and the nets had been dismantled, we played on. Shayna was mauled in the box by a Green player (there's DNA evidence on the back of her jersey to prove it), but the calls kept falling to our opponents.

At this point, we suspected the worst. The refs were keeping the game going until someone scored, and the Green team eventually prevailed. Several us started chanting at the refs that they could blow the whistle to end the game now, and, they did so within 30 seconds of the kick at mid-field.

The Green side erupted in spasms of glee (and the little twerps all got brownies- which would have undoubtedly been tossed in the trash had they not finagled a win). We grumbled, feeling a bit like poor losers, yet justifiably so. It was the first time I wanted to throw pies in the faces
of the opposition's parents.

So the Gold team is 0-4-1, but coming off of our best game yet. We might not make the playoffs, but we'll make our opponents work for their wins.

That previously was written around the end of September....

Even further update, bringing us current: Yesterday (October 11), Shayna scored her first goal of the season, with Good Luck Charm Grandma Diane from Hawaii in attendance. Then her teammate Omar "The Magician" added a hat trick, giving Gold their first win of the year, shutting out the Navy Blue team 4-0. Shayna played goalkeeper in quarter 3 and made 1 save.
Their record is 1-6-1.

They have three games to go. We'll keep you posted.

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