Saturday, August 6, 2016

soccer for all

sam played in the park city tournament this weekend with his new team.
they won 2nd place.
bigger things happened than just winning the medal.
he switched clubs this year from forza to metasport,
and we lost our beloved coach pete tesch.
we went to a new team where we only knew 2 players.
it has been difficult.
we started off the summer tournament season with some pretty hard losses,
and many frustrating moments where i feared the team was not going to gel
and we were going to be outsiders forever.
plus, it has been hard for me and sam to only see him play center defender,
a position he has never played.
he has been out of sorts
and has missed what he does so well as forward and mid-fielder.
things took a turn this weekend as this team gained momentum and experience
and bonded over a victory in the semifinals that came after overtime and a shoot out.
after a 15 hour day in park city we came home with a 2nd place medal
and a connection with the new team that i thought was never going to come.
after 3 games in 1 day i saw the potential for this team.
they found their groove 
and dug deep and fought hard in the final game,
so hard they led the other team the whole game or held them in a tie into overtime.
they lost by 1 point,
but it still felt like victory,
even though sam cried.
i think he felt a lot of pressure as last defender,
like it was somehow his fault.
thank goodness for the kind words of an assistant coach that helped him see all that he stopped
and to see that without him the game would have been bleak.
and thank goodness we could help him switch his mindset by seeing that fighting hard through 3 games without giving up is a big deal.
also to see that this team beat us 5-0 the night before,
and we didn't give them an easy victory this time around.
i'm hoping confidence will continue to grow inside of him and help him to be aggressive on the field and a part of the team off the field.
he's a good boy,
a great son,
and a fantastic soccer player.
we are so proud of him.
also proud of maggie and will for being supporting troopers all weekend.
they were happy to play with lake, taft, and owen all weekend.
and happy to chase golf carts,
play playground tag with a base
(will got called in by maggie to enforce the base rules.),
and get autographs from cool teenagers.
and for me,
i had my own lessons.
trusting time is almost always the right thing to do.
relationships in this venue don't happen automatically.
they happen after time together
and mutual time supporting these boys,
who in fact are still actually kids.

sam has been the only player that has played every game without a break.
pete tesch coached the game on thursday.
he told him it doesn't look good to ask for a break.
pete told him he wants him to be the kind of player like tyson who was mad every time he got taken out.
sam told me he made a commitment then and there to not ask for a break ever.
he felt inspired,
but he did get a 1 minute water break for the 1st time at the end of the last game for a drink.
he's easy to inspire if the message is sent in his language.

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