Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Reality Of Playing above Your Level

So the Pumas got a taste of what it means to play in a U-10 tournament when your team is made up of 9-year-olds. Most U-10 teams are made up largely of 10-year-olds that would be starting 5th grade in the fall. Macy's entire team is made up of girls a year behind and it showed.

How bad was it? Let's just say if there had been a mercy rule the game would have been over at halftime.

The girls were pretty dispirited, especially with the rough play. One of the things that stands out for me about these girls is they they largely lack the mean streak that athletes need to develop. Our girls don't get physical and it shows. That will change for most of them at some point, it's just a question of when.

Twenty minutes later we were all sitting in Applebees catching part of the Engand-USA World Cup match over a beer and everything was fine. Well, I was over a beer, anyway. The girls were excited to get back to the hotel and get to the swimming pool. Tomorrow they'll be exited to play again. The advantages of youth.


  1. As a coach of my daughter's soccer team I know how you feel. Our girls only play for the fun of it, and most of the parents who attend are there to have fun. However, we sometimes end up playing teams who are out to win at all costs. Not only do they get rather aggressive, but often it's their parents on the touchline who are encouraging it. It's about teaching our kids the values of hard-work, teamwork, responsibility more than anything else. Sadly some forget that!

  2. We finished the tournament 0-3 without scoring a goal. That sounds pretty bad, but our girls actually improved a lot by the end of the weekend. They played their rear ends off and even started showing signs of developing that mean streak I was talking about. Not dirty play of course, just the willingness to battle that is important at the higher levels.

    We couldn't be prouder of the effort they put in under difficult conditions; they never quit. After it was all over they were in a great mood and are ready to head to the Twin Cities next weekend for another tournament.

    Thanks for commenting!