The soccer season is usually over the first weekend in November, but thanks to Tropical Storm Lee and the Snowstorm of October, we ended up having two games for each kid this weekend.
Both kids' teams had some pretty big obstacles this year. For Number Two, they had a new coach whose mom died a couple of weeks into the season, so she missed a lot of practices. They'd lost four players and taken on a couple of new ones, and the weather canceled a lot of practices. They had a really hard time meshing. But last week and this week they really came together. They'd gained confidence and comfort with each other, and played hard, coming up with enough wins to finish in second place in their division. The detail Number two is proudest of is Goals Against. She and her co-goalie held 7 opponents to a total of 7 goals.
Number One had different challenges. She had the same coach she's had since fifth grade (he's the best coach in the world, I swear!), but because of a big dropoff in participation at this level, they cobbled together a U19 team that had one senior, a handful of juniors, sophomores, and freshmen, and three 8th graders. Most of the girls hadn't played together, and they faced the same scheduling issues. Number One missed one game due to a groin pull and ankle injury, and was hobbled in others for the same reasons. Yesterday (Saturday), they played with only 7 players against 9 on a field sized for 11 on a side. They didn't win any games, didn't even score more than one goal all season, but they never gave up, never backed down. Today they played fiercely against an overly aggressive team. I'm incredibly proud of them and so glad Number One had the opportunity to play.
Number Two is in fine shape (though she might be sore tomorrow), but Number One is pretty battered. Yesterday she played in goal and was magnificent, but she had a "save" blocking the ball with her abdomen, which now hurts when she sneezes, coughs, or laughs, and tweaked a hamstring. The hamstring wasn't much of an issue today because she got kicked in the kneecap, so that pain overwhelmed the hammy. She can barely walk tonight. But she wears her injuries as badges of honor, so who can complain? She can rest for the next six weeks, until indoor soccer starts. :)
The blog tour continues! Today (Monday!) I'll be at Rosalie Lario's blog, where I talk about why I set my books where I do, and at Rachel Firasek's blog, participating in her month of thanks with a thank-you letter to my mom, who died long before she got to see me reach this level of success.
Tonight (Monday! I'm really messed up writing this post at midnight-ish) I'm doing a radio interview with BK Walker at 6:00 p.m. EST. Tell your friends, and come give a listen!
Now I am off to bed, visions of my Patriots' win over the Jets dancing in my head. :)