Thursday, July 30, 2015

Whipperwhirl Wanderers

It was a very rare Ava and I kind of morning.  After a somewhat sleepless night, I kinda wanted to just hang out for a quiet morning at home just chilaxing.  Also very rare and treasured.

But, I knew I would have all kinds of regrets wasting this amazing morning with just the two of us, so shook off the lazytude and loaded up the back-pack and off the two of us went in search of a mini adventure.  Going off a few Club Tread recommendations we made our way out  in search of the Whipperwhirl/Sandy Beach trail on the West side of Harrison Lake.

Thankfully the directions we followed were perfect.  The length of time it should have taken us was bang on.  The route markers were as described.  The Sandy Beach was found.  The River was were it should have been.  Whew!  At one point I did wonder what the heck I was thinking doing this unknown trail on such a deadline. But... we managed to get back to pickup the other's with five minutes to spare even after a little photo shoot on the beach where Ava showed me some of her precious little growing up attitude:)

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Legion Of Boom- Aka "The Boom Team"

I arrived at the field, parked and watched.  Carefully considering whether I should get out and join the team in front of me on the sidelines.  Or, stay sitting anonymously in 'the safe zone' of my vehicle.  See, I was asked if I would be interested in joining this Co-ed soccer team.  Almost completely full of people I didn't know.  Playing Co-ed would be a first for me and I was feeling a little lacking in confidence, especially after watching some very good soccer being played.

Finally, I got up some of my usual courage and casually walked over to stand beside those standing on the sidelines and quietly said hello.  The only two people I knew on the team were playing, so felt just a little out of place.   Awhile later Ravi came over and says, 'So, you playing with us?'  I could only nod and say yes.  So, the teams jersey and socks were thrown over to me and on the field I went to try to prove that I could fit in with the team.

I passed the test and officially became a member of the Legion of Boom team.  Or as my kids call it, "The Boom Team."   Most of my soccer play has been in the 'Over 30's Women's League and wow, what a difference.  The pace of the game, the passing, heading and everything else was so much more than I was used to.  And it was fantastic!  Certainly what I was looking for.

It took awhile for me to get to know this team.  And what a great mix of people.  Everyone was serious about playing great soccer and at the same time respectful of each other and encouraging.   We had a fantastic season, finishing in 3rd overall in our division.  Of course with the quality of players on The Boom Team, this shouldn't have been any surprise.

Our team had not just one great goalie, but two!  Jeremy and Dave M. both respectably made numbers of great saves, keeping us in every game.  With Chantelle's fantastic ability to bicycle kick the ball multiple times and getting it into the open almost every time.  Casey's coaching(yelling:) from the back line. Corey's amazing speed, ball control and his ability to get to the ball no matter where he was on the field.  My fellow defence ladies, Ashley, Nicole and Dee who all played so well protecting our goalies as we could.

Paula who made so many great crosses through the season and who brought her awesome parents to many a game to keep a watchful eye on the many kids.  Ravi and Dave who not only did a great job of managing the  team but played each position they needed to and with such grace:) Ryan could run for miles and who was such a solid but quiet presence.

The Witt sisters.  As many called them.  Jess and Jen.  Excellent players with many a goal and such great control of the play.  After a full season of trying to remember who was who, I finally came to the realization that I should just give up, like many others had and just call "Witt" and one of them would respond.  Lol.  And then there was sweet Alana.  Ever smiling and making many a great play from the front line.

Tournament weekend finally came!  And we were ready and excited to finish the season strong.  But wow! Was it ever a hot one.  Playing 4 games through that heat was challenging for sure.  Many great memories were made, great soccer played and lots of hard work.

One of my favourite memories was when Dave was running back to beat the ball that was going over his head.  Arms were flailing to give him some momentum, and he touched the ball 'accidentally'.  Resulting in yet another yellow card and awarding him a place on the sideline for the balance of game.  I still wonder if he was terribly unhappy about the call.  He did after all get an early start on the cold beers.

Even with Dave on the sideline, we did manage to win the game 3-2.  A fantastic shot from outside the box and just under the top of the goal by Witt.  And both Ravi and Casey took the ball all the way from mid-field and got shots off near the goal line earning them a goal.

In the 3rd game, not our finest start, I managed to cause one of the opposing players biggest guys to the  drop solidly to the ground.  This earned him a whole lot of laughter by his team mates.  While I walked away innocently and without a card.  We didn't win this one in the end. But we certainly turned the game around in the second half, finishing with a 3-1 loss.  Ryan earned himself a well deserved goal is this one after putting on so many miles throughout the tourney.

Dave M. and Jeremy had some kind of agreement that Jeremy would play goal for the final games of the tourney.  But Dave was on the hook to score a goal.  And that he did and in fine form in the final game.  He managed to score the games only goal giving us our third win and Jeremy played for the shut-out.

Thanks to the Legion of Boom for allowing me and my family to be part of the team.  And to Dave and Ravi who did a great job of building an engaged team and keeping us so well organized.  I owe my husband alot of gratitude for not giving me to hard of a time for being away at soccer for two to three nights a week.  To my kids who loved to come to each of my games and Peyton who always said, "good job mom."  Often they had no idea even the colour of the team we played against because they really just came to play and that was just fine by me. And last but certainly not least, thanks to Paula's mom and dad who came out to many a game to watch as well as keep an eye on all the kids while we focused on the game.