Serendipitous Soccer

When we got home from Utah, one of the things on my to-do list was to get Z into the city soccer league. A week-ish passed before I finally looked into it, and sure enough the registration deadline had long passed and tryouts had even already taken place. Mom fail! With a pit in my stomach, I looked at the practice schedule and saw the teams were all divvied out and set to start practicing the very next evening. Double mom fail! However, as I looked closer at the list, I saw one of the teams had one less player than the others. My gaze moved to the top of that team's list, as I hoped it might be someone we knew and could hope-against-hope ask to squeeze Z in at the {very} last minute. My eyes lit up as I read the name: the coach was Brandon's colleague (his next-door colleague in fact) and was also Z's cub scout leader when we first moved here. Thank you small town SC!  I called the fellow in charge of soccer, let him in on my mom fail situation, then asked to join the team, reassuring him that we knew the coach and were pretty sure it would be fine. He let us in! And later that same evening, Brandon got an email from Coach W, welcoming Z to the team and asking if Brandon could step in and coach the first practice, as he would be out of town. Give a little, get a little, small town soccer! B has been assistant coach for the rest of the season.
 I had only gone to one game prior to tonight. Soren thinks he's one of the team players and insists on standing IN THE GOAL BOX AT ALL TIMES. It's rough. But we were coming to the end of the season, and I realized I hadn't taken any pictures yet, so we tagged along. We brought lots of distracting snacks for the wannabe soccer player, and even though they didn't hold him for long, we survived. And as it ends up, I'm really glad we chose tonight to be the game we attended (you'll see why soon). We had to get through the first half though, before any action happened.
 For the first half of the season, Z was playing all the positions, running up and down and up and down the field for almost the entire hour. This was awfully tiresome, as swim practice is on the same days as soccer (another mom fail story for another day) and he was going straight from one workout to the other. So for about the last week or two, they switched Z to keeper, and he's had a mostly fun (sometimes devastating) time since. Tonight was a little slow though. Lots of this:
And this:
And lots of this:
 Let's face it, by the time the fist half was finished, we were all getting a little.....bored. Luckily though, halftime came, positions were swapped out, and Z got a chance to be in the thick of things for a little while.
 Then, while trying to score a goal, Zane got taken down in the box by an opposite team member. He was okay, he shook it off, but it ended up being bad enough of an offense to reward him a penalty kick: his first this season. I was up field a ways, chatting with another mom when I heard Brandon yelling, "Michelle! Michelle!" from down by the goal. When I finally looked over at him, he gave the international sign for "CAMERA! QUICK!" And I ran down just in time to capture the moment in 1, 2, 3 shots.

Zane scored a goal (also his first this season)! And in that moment, I was glad we'd gone to the trouble (albeit a little belated) of getting him into the league this fall. He was one happy fellow.  
 We were all happy for our Z, even the wannabe with the mullet:
 After the goal, Z ran straight to the opposite end of the field and took back over for the keeper. I sighed relief as Soren and I went off to find a goal box to stand in the middle of. 
 It was a fine evening of soccer! I'll still be so happy when it's over. Wait, did I say that out loud? 


walt or jean said…
Wow. Incredible action shots of Zane, our hero! Loved all of the pictures. Way to go assistant coach, Brandon, and super fans, Michelle, Annie, and Soren.
Kjerstin said…
You're amazing. Amazing mom, amazing photographer, amazing writer. Loved, loved, loved finally catching up on all your happenings. Your kids are so grown up (how is Z 10?? He was a teeny tiny baby when we met!), you look beautiful and happy, and it feels like you're so settled and at home in your beautiful town and home. Love you, my friend. I'm so happy to feel your happiness (even your happiness for when soccer will be over. So been there!). :)