Pictured above is yet another fine collection of athletic specimens who once again turned out for the 2012 Fall Coaches Game. Those of you with a keen eye will realize that there was an infusion of new (and almost young) blood this year.
For a brief period that produced a fast and skillful game with the watching kids marveling at the skill and athleticism shown by their coaches. Alas the initial burst of energy soon took its toll and once again the coaching tips provided for the kids were more of the ’don’t do as I do, do as I say’ variety.
High School coach Patrick Birns admirably demonstrated why you’re less likely to score if you shoot at the keeper, no matter how immaculate your approach play, while u12 Boys coach Eric Virmalo showed why his advice to his players not to lean back when taking a penalty kick should also be heeded.
As in the Spring game the two teams were again captained by Trevin Berger and John Madeira. The Berger team were the first to score through Geoff Jago with Berger himself adding a second shortly afterwards. It was not all one-way traffic, though, with Scott Dias being called upon to make several saves for the Berger team.
Just before half-time Carl Rucker also produced a goal-line save for the Madeira team to keep the score at 2-0 but as the rules prohibit two goalkeepers the inevitable result was a penalty kick. As noted earlier however, in the spirit of the occasion, Eric Virmalo elected to keep the game close by not converting it, at least that’s what he said at the break.
No doubt having been given the ’hairdryer’ treatment by coach Bert Mukkulainen (reduced to the sideline by recent knee surgery) the Madeira came out much the stronger for the second half. With their captain taking a leading role (at least in complaining to the referees), they soon managed to exploit the lack of pace in the Berger team, many of whom were built for comfort rather than speed, and pulled one back through Rob Broekhuis.
Scott Radio then showed himself to be on the right wavelength (sorry) by finding the net with a well-placed shot just inside the far post.
With the score tied at 2-2 it was all to play for and both sides had chances to gain the winner but to no avail. The ever-enthusiastic Madeira suggested a penalty shoot-out but with Red Robin beckoning, limbs aching and the lights scheduled to go out wiser counsel prevailed and honors were shared.
Once again our thanks to all the coaches who played and ensured the game was played in the right spirit. Our thanks also to referees Ben Jago and Tyler Madeira.
See you all again in June we hope. - George White