Sunday, November 18, 2007

The end of the season banquet

Well the soccer season is officially over in Ridley. We had our annual banquet with over 600 families in attendance. Each team's coach presents two awards to deserving players on his team. I had tough choices this year for my two.

For the u6 girls Frenzy the winners were
MacKenzie Cannon for outstanding sportsmanship and over all play
Hannah Oaster won for most improved. She went from 0 goals last year to 5 this year. She also was a team leader during practice and the games.

For the u8 boys Crew the winners were
Jace Roberts for outstanding spirit, sportsmanship and hard work. This boy came to every practice, was the first boy there, among the last to leave, gave 100% in every game and every practice, never complained and improved dramatically all year. Every team needs a Jace Roberts and I wish I could coach a team full. He is a pleasure to coach because he can be coached, what he lacks in skill he more than makes up with heart. Heart cannot be coached. He plays the game like I would play.

JJ Oaster received it for outstanding play and improvement. Being the coach's son is hard, he had among the highest expectations of anyone on my team. He was consistently a leader in both practice and games and all of the boys really liked him on the team. He made the first team as my starting striker because of his great ball awareness, passing ability and ball handling skill. He became the corner kick and direct kick player by the end of the year. He had 7 SOT in the final three games with one of them hitting home. He is probably the best pure passer I have ever coached and among the most accurate kickers. In an age and at an age where kids want the glory of the goal, JJ passes and passes extremely well. He also can bend a ball like few boys his age I have ever seen. He exceeded my expectations and truly had to work very hard to get this award.

I know my two kids got awards but they truly earned them. I may be a little biased but I give awards for more than skills. I sat down with the parents and explained why each one got the award and not one parent questioned my decisions. After my explanations they all agreed.

I am going to miss my Saturdays on the pitch but it gives me time to study up and work up more plays and practices for the spring. I may be promoted to an assistant in the travel system next year so I will really have to step up my coaching education.

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