Achievement+ Perspective+ Perseverance



|January 2007| Joey Kennington

|January 2007|

Joey Kennington and Jason Foster help demonstrate to parents the technique used in the "simple" pass that is not "so simple".
First Parent Education Class a Success, Cold
The first WSA "Parent Education" course was held on Saturday, January 27th, as part one of a three part series entitled Soccer Seminar Saturdays.  The first session was instructed by WSA staff coaches Jason Foster, Joey Kennington, and Roger Bush.  The WSA 96 boys "red" team served as demonstrators for the event. The course, basically a version of "soccer 101" focused on the "fundamentals" of play, including dribbling, passing, collecting, and driving balls. 
Parents who attended the 1st WSA parent education seminar and the WSA 96 boys blue team pose for a picture together, braving the cold temperatures in the name of the world's beautiful game.
Several brave souls showed up in spite of the freezing temperatures and snow flurries, and many parents even participated in the field sessions.  One of the primary goals of the parent education initiative is to help parents better understand just what it is we are asking our children to do out there on the soccer field.  As Mrs. Grayson pointed out, "It is hard to see the ball and everything else in front of you," when asked what was most challenging about the day's session.  Mrs. Grayson's son, JohnPaul, plays for the 96 boys "blue" team.  Several parents claimed they were more apt to understand the challenges that players face in game situations following the session.   
Parents learning to pass and collect a soccer ball. 
The instructors were impressed with the resolve of the parents to learn.  In fact several picked up on many of the techniques relatively quickly.  While there may be several parents with sore muscles today, it is just this sort of ambition to learn, understand, and advance the sport that is the model for achievement our youth sport clubs should embrace.  WSA Director of Coaching, Roger Bush, points out one of the objectives of parent education, "We must attempt to narrow the generation gap that exists in the culture of American soccer.  Especially as the sport advances across our nation.  The gap is smaller than it was 20 years ago, but our mission now must be to make it minimal."
Thanks again to the 96 boys red team, and especially thanks to all the parents for participating.
The next parent/coach education seminar is scheduled for Saturday, February 10th.  Please continue to stay tuned in to the WSA website and hotline for any changes. 
Luke Bailey, a WSA 96 boys player, helps give directions to Mrs. Dees (daughter Brigitte Dees, WSA 95 girls) during a passing drill. 

WSA 94 Boys League Champions!
Congratulations to the WSA 94 boys for winning the u13 GCSA A-division league championship this past Fall.  The team finished the season with only one draw and one loss as blemishes on it's otherwise perfect record.  The squad's only loss came to Extreme on the final outing of the season, as it gave away a late goal to lose 2-1.  

One year ago to fancy a league championship for WSA 94 boys would have been about as improbable as any prediction any expert could have made.  A year ago today the squad had just wrapped up a Fall season as the bottom team in the u12 boys league.  The team had begun a slow trend of becoming more competitive last Spring as score gaps seemed to narrow, but wins were still rare.  The next season the team contended to place in the top 3 of league and had an upset performance at the State Tournament, missing the next round on goal difference after tying TSC (eventual champion). But in the offseason tryout period the team was certainly still a relative unknown as they added players from local rec programs and their own local developmental team programs.  What transpired next can only be described as magical for this group of "underdog" 12 year old boys. 
They opened the season with a surprising advancement to the BASC Labor Day tournament semifinals.  The team played well in the semi match, but found some unfortunate luck keep them from the finals. Then in early November the team then found themselves as the improbable finalists in the CASA tournament at Little Rock, Arkansas, where they once again seemed a bit unlucky, dropping the championship match on an own goal a few minutes from time. 
But they just squeaked past rivals Bartlesville, NEO Extreme, and Thunder in a close league race to capture one point more than nearest contender Thunder, for the league championship trophy.  The championship season included wins over Hurricane, Blitz, Bartlesville, TSC, Celtic, WFA Capitals, Little Rock FC, among others.  The league championship has qualified the team for another improbable: a trip to the OPL for the Spring 07 campaign. 
WSA 94 boys are coached by Roger Bush and assistant coach is Jeff McIntosh.  The 94 boys team manager is Mrs. Jamie Bradford.

Congratulations WSA 94 boys for a great Fall season and a terrific example of perseverance and work ethic. 

A shot from the action that was more than intense at the 1st Annual SlugFest.
WSA and SFC Compete in Indoor SlugFest
The WSA 93 girls, and few of the club's 94's and 92's, met up with the SFC 92 girls team in Sapulpa on Friday night, January 26th, for an all-night indoor soccer tournament that SFC coach, Michael Beyer's had termed "Slug Fest '07".  The girls were randomly drawn into "inter-club" teams of 5, players from each club represented on each 5-person team, and what followed was a very intense and dramatic 5 v 5 indoor tournament.  Coach Beyer's namesake for the event proved prophetic.  And most importantly it seemed everyone had a great time!
The WSA girls and SFC 92 girls enjoy some pizza and fellowship as neighboring clubs.
After 5 rounds of play 4 teams, Dinosaurs, Golden Fury, Doritos, and Double-H, were moved on to the semifinal stage of slugfest.  The SWS (Sapulpa West Sides) and Super Flying Ninja Turtles earned a trip to the consolation game (also known as the "donkey" game).  SWS won the donkey match 2-1 on golden goal. In the first semifinal match the Dinosaurs prevailed on golden goal over the Fury, while Doritos scored two late goals to end the Double-H bid in the other semi winning 3-1.  The championship match was well worth the admission (free) that night and delivered all the drama and intensity a championship should to the screaming fans.  The Dinosaurs scored a late goal to grab the 1-0 victory and the championship trophy of chocolate bars. 
Following the championship match the WSA and SFC 92 girls pose for a quick photo op.
The event also included a few team building exercises, fellowship between two clubs located just down HW 97 from each other, and of course a pizza party afterwards.  The West Side Alliance S.C. would like to thank the Little People Learning Center for lending the facility for the event, Coach Beyers for orchestrating such an eventful and fun evening, and SFC 92 girls for their hospitality and fellowship.  WSA would also like to wish SFC 92 good luck on the coming season! 
Coach Beyers meets with the championship teams, Doritos and Dinosaurs just before kick-off.

WSA 94 Girls League Runners-Up
Again!  The WSA 94 girls captured their third consecutive league runner-up trophy this past Fall, missing the league championship by one point to their nemesis Blitz.  The squad, who has been the most consistent performer in their age division's GCSA league saw another chance for promotion to the OPL slip through their hands in the last week of the season.  It marks the third time in as many seasons that the team has missed the league championship trophy by a mere "one point". 

Coach Terry Hall, while excited about the team's continued success was hoping for a more consistent league presence, searching for that all elusive invitation from the OPL.  The team defeated league champion Blitz in regular season play by three goals, but dropped points in the standings from a couple of draws and a loss on what coach Hall called "off days" for the team.  The squad will add the 2006 League Trophy to an already exhaustive list of hardware won, and Coach Hall insists the team will be more determined this Spring to grab the elusive championship.  If third time wasn't "a charm" the team certainly understands the value of perseverance and hard work.  

Congratulations on another extremely successful season!  And good luck on your quest for the top trophy in '07.

WSA 91 Boys League Runners-Up
The WSA 91 boys learned a valuable lesson this past Fall season from head coach, Pedro Colina: "team is top priority".  Colina's 91 boys have taken only a couple of years to emerge onto the 91 boys scene in Oklahoma and this season after having claimed two tournament championships in the early Fall, the squad seemed primed to make a run at the League championship trophy.  The squad proved true to form for the majority of the season, staying atop the standings most of the way.

However, late in the season Coach Colina knew he needed to make a point to keep his team on track.  Coach Colina felt his boys were playing less "team" soccer and were becoming too reliant on individual flare.  As the team neared the end of the season still sitting atop the standings they found themselves being drawn back into a disciplined approach to "team" soccer by their coach.  While the long-term benefits of this lesson will no doubt prove invaluable, the team sacrificed a few goals as some the squad's regular goal scorers were forced onto the bench as part of the discipline.  WSA 91 wound up dropping a couple of close matches down the stretch which did not give them enough points to claim the championship trophy, but still enough points to finish as league runner-up.  

The team finished the Fall 2006 campaign on 7 wins and 2 losses for 21 points in the GCSA u16 A Division, which qualified them as the league runner-up on points.  It marks the third trophy of the first half of the year for the WSA 91 boys and will be added to an increasingly longer list of hardware the team keeps collecting.  

The WSA 91 boys are coached full-time by Pedro Colina and team manager is Mr. Kent Townsend.  Congratulations 91's on a great season!  And well-done to a team that is prioritizing the true development of the character of champions.

WSA Community Shield Match Day Set for February 17th
This could get intense!  The first annual WSA Community Shield Match day has been set for Saturday, February 17th, all day at the WSA home training and match grounds, the Rivercity Parks in Sand Springs. WSA Director of Coaching, Roger Bush, says he hopes the day will help energize the club before the Spring season, "We hope the event triggers some enthusiasm and energy for the upcoming Spring campaign."
Every WSA team has been pitted against another intra-club opponent in the event.  The schedule begins at 10:30 a.m. and concludes with the final kick-off at 3:30 p.m.  Coaches brainstormed the event this past Fall and began implementing plans to host the event following the Fall season.  As many WSA teams just wrapped up terrific league seasons, the event will no doubt feature some top quality soccer.  And sometimes these "intra-club" matches can become rather intense.  One needs look no further than the championship match at the BASC Labor Day tourney when WSA 89 faced off against WSA 90.  

An actual "Community Shield" trophy is being customized for the event and will be presented to each winning team.  Winners will get their match day victory forever etched into the Community Shield trophy for future generations to see.  In addition to match play, the club also plans to host some other events such as WSA apparel sale, drawings, competitions, etc... 
This unique event is just another opportunity for WSA family to come together and join in celebrating the world's beautiful game.  The preliminary schedule and pairings for the event can be found at this link.  The schedule will not be finalized until the end of January.

"Dylan Alexander of the 93 boys flies in for a challenge.  The 1st Annual WSA Community Shield Match Day promises to feature some intense play."

Silver Hardware Rolling in For WSA at Midwinter Holiday
A few weeks ago WSA had 7 teams contending for a league championship.  Each team played some great football in their final outings, but a break here, a penalty there, and an awkward bounce there, left WSA fans everywhere scratching their heads.  While WSA may not be bringing home much golden hardware for the Fall 2007 campaign, there has probably never been quite as much silver around the club. 
In one of the club's strongest seasons to date it appears only one team still has a stronghold on a league championship, the WSA 89 boys in the Oklahoma Premiere League, while two others, WSA 90 boys and WSA 89 girls, are banking on a hope and a prayer (they must hope certain opponents lose in the final weeks of the OPL).  The WSA 89 boys (knock on wood) are in the midst of a perfect season, unbeaten, unscored on, perfect record.
The WSA 94 girls finished as GCSA league runners-up for the third time in their short history, missing the championship by a mere point in the standings.  The WSA 94 boys saw their GCSA u13 boys championship slip through their hands, literally, in the waning moments of their final match of the season.  Sitting on a 1-1 draw that would have given the boys the trophy their opponent found the net five minutes from time courtesy of a rainy and slippery pitch.  The 91 boys dropped their final home game by a goal, which relegated them to a 2nd place finish in the GCSA u16 league.
The WSA 90 boys appeared to have secured the OPL championship only to discover another team had entered the league picture late, and still had several games in hand.  The 90 boys should have secured 2nd place, but will have to wait on Celtic to finish it's league schedule in the OPL to know where they will finish (1st or 2nd).  The WSA 89 girls had won 9 of their last 10 matches to move from bottom of the tables to the very top, before a strong wind and mid-winter break catastrophe in Norman (the team lost 5-2 to Fury) left the team a game back of the championship.  The WSA 92/91 girls looked to have a chance to move into 2nd place with an upset victory over eventual league champions Extreme in their final weekend, but the young team couldn't find the back of the net, and yielded a goal in injury time to concede the top two league spot finishing 3rd.

Congratulations to all seven WSA league placing teams on outstanding seasons.  Please continue to check the website as standings are finalized to find out exactly how the OPL teams finish up.

The WSA soccer club is currently hosting the "Sports metric" training program for the female athlete, instructed by WSA staff member, Craig Anderson.  Craig is a certified trainer for the University of Cincinnati Sports metric program which focuses on injury prevention and functional movements for basketball and soccer involved with "engaging the hamstrings".

Coach Anderson has raised his daughter Leah through a club and collegiate career, and a few injuries along the way.  His experience in the women's soccer world has led him to the mission of helping girls understand how to get more out of their leg muscles during sports participation.  The Sports metric Program focuses on education and training of the female athlete with respect to engaging upper leg muscles in movements that often times are performed in manners that jeopardize the athlete.
The goal of the program is first and foremost training.  Athletes are meeting every Tuesday and Thursday night in a small training room at our local Community Center that looks like a training room out of Rocky III (the girls weren't impressed with this the first night by the way -- not Rocky fans we guess).  The workouts will be intense and focused, specialized in motivating the girls to "engage their hamstrings" in functional movements.
"You will be sore.  You will hurt," Coach Anderson relayed to the seven brave souls who showed up for the first night of training over the holidays.  "The female athlete is by her nature in a compromised position for knee injuries.  This program is known for improving the athletes vertical jump, quickness, and power -- but it also should help reduce the risk of injury."  

If any WSA female players are interested in the program they should immediately contact WSA Director of Coaching, Roger Bush,  There is still room to join the program -- but athletes must join within the first week so that they do not fall behind.  The program will run throughout January and into the first week of February.

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