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Friday, April 21, 2017

A Conundrum

"a confusing or difficult problem"

This soccer season has been one of the strangest and frustrating to date.  We had almost two weeks of rainouts and trying to reschedule the games is getting  irritating.  Several reschedules conflicted with games already on the schedule so we had to divide the girls playing up from junior high so that each team had enough players.  It has worked alright so far.  The junior high team has to do without their main keeper and one game only had 11 players. 

This last week there were two games going on at the same time. Junior High killed their game and WON 3-0!  They played so well and had a ton of fun doing it.  While their game was going on, high school was playing on the opposite side of town.  The high school game did not go as planned.  This opponent is always out for blood and has injured several of our players in the past.  This game was no different.  They started the game with very physical attacks/tackles with no intervention from the refs.  After multiple tackles from behind two of our girls were injured.  We ended the half down by one point.  The girls were already pretty beat up from a game last week and were getting trampled on the field.  They were frustrated and upset by a "Christian" team being so ugly and hateful.

We started the second half of the game and it only got worse.  I decided after another nasty take down that enough was enough.  When I saw one of my players coming to do a throw-in weeping, I had had enough.  This was a soccer game and should have been at least somewhat fun for them.  They should not have to be on the field scared to play.  I told the ref that I was pulling my team and the game was over. 

The other teams' coaches were livid.  They said some choice words and we walked off the field.  I explained to the parents my decision and we left.  I have never abandoned a game before and hope to never do it again, but the safety of my players has to be the most important factor; not winning or losing. 

The week carried on and that team filed a 'complaint' against me.  It was an ordeal but one I would do again for my girls.

Jr High had two more games that they won and High School had a game against a tough opponent that they won as well. 

There has been backlash from my decision and our team has a bad reputation around here for playing dirty.  Which makes me laugh because all of the refs we have note that we play a physical but fairly clean game.  They compliment us on the integrity of our team and yet the Christian schools around here spread rumors about us and say that we are awful.  No one is perfect and we make our share of mistakes but it is frustrating when rumors are spread and the truth dies.

Yet, the public schools we play have no issues with us...

A conundrum indeed.

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