By the time the fall soccer season comes to an end, most of us, players, coaches and trainers, are pretty tired and ready for a break. It is really good for us, mentally and physically, to take time to rest our bodies. Without all the practices, games and travel. That being said, after about two weeks I find myself getting bored and wanting to play again. I start missing it.
I am very proud of my team and how hard we worked this past season to improve. I believe the main reason for that improvement is the positive attitude the team embodied and the belief that working hard under Isaac’s coaching would pay off. Instead of keeping a negative attitude from the past two disappointing seasons, we decided to do something about it. From the first day of preseason, we pushed one another to give our best and to come to practice ready to work, even when we felt burned-out, sore, or just did not feel like playing. While I am happy with how we are showing improvement, I know that we still have a long way to go. We all recognize that and want to continue to make progress.
We do not want to be happy with just making it to the conference tournament at the end of the season. As our soccer program continues to develop, hopefully one day it will get to the point that it is a given we go to the conference tournament.
I am excited for our fall 2017 season, but to do well we are going to have to put a lot of work in during the spring and summer. The main concern for us is the amount of key players that are graduating. We are losing two of our top scorers and almost all of our starting forwards and midfielders. Those are a lot of holes to fill if we want to to take another step forward from our last season and not a step back. But it also makes me excited, because we have lots of players with potential to greatly impact the program.
Losing those important players will actually help us in a way, because it will force players to step up. It will lead to more competitiveness and hard work during practices. Players are going to be fighting hard to earn starting spots, knowing that there are more open.
This spring will allow us to figure out how to effectively utilize our players and their strengths, as well as focus on individual improvement. One thing Coach Isaac does well is analyze a player’s game and what they need to work on to help our team. We will also have exhibition games or small scrimmages this spring, which are one of the best ways to prepare for the coming season. I’m excited to get back to work because I know what our team is capable of when we put in the effort. We can make our next (and my last) season a good one. Go Bulldogs!
Shelby High, #7