Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Great Start for CSM Soccer as the Flames beat Briar Cliff

Our CSM Flames beat Briar Cliff in our first game of the season, 4-1. Hoo-Rah! Goals were scored by Melissa King (2,) Daniella Padilla and Katie Archibald. All in all, it was a good outing. We got stronger as the game went on for the most part. The first half we struggled a bit against the wind and were outshot 4-12. A set of nerves plagued us a bit the first 20 minutes. For a number of our players it was their first collegiate game at this level. However, we got things straight at halftime and came out guns blazing and scored 3 goals. I was pleased that after we gave up a goal (to make the game 2-1,) we came right back and scored to make it 3-1. And then added one to put the game out of reach. Briar Cliff played extremely hard and I feel fortunate to get a few past them. It was fun to finally get out there and play after 3 weeks of pre-season.

We even lit a torch and put it behind the bench (we are the flames!) We truly burned bright at times! We were on fire. We were burnin' it up! We just lit up the scoreboard. We were hot. (OK, I'll stop now.)

After the game when I went home I turned on the TV and the Democratic National Convention was on and Joe Biden was giving a speech. I am not much into politics but he said something that I thought applied to our quest for a great season. He said, "Failure is inevitable but giving up is unforgiveable." I think that can really relate to soccer. There are many times that we make mistakes and fail on the field. I make mistakes coaching and managing the team. It happens. What really make a difference and what defines the team in the long run is how you deal with the mistakes. Do you freak out and stop playing? Do you stop hustling? Or do you keep on keeping on no matter what? Our team needs to have persistance as one of its main values. We need to be relentless no matter what is happening and persevere.

We took a step toward that tonight. There is nothing that bugs me more than people giving up on a play or in a game. At the beginning of the game--we made a lot of silly mistakes. Passing to the other team, stabbing at the ball and things like that. We were in an uncomfortable place. But we shook off that funk and were able to persevere. I like that and hope that we continue to grow in that way.

I remember back in the day watching the movie, "The Outlaw Josey Wales." Chief Dan George says something in that great Clint Eastwood movie that for some reason I have always remembered: "Endeavor to Persevere." Ya, it sounds like it applys here. What do you think?

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