2019 Soccer Season is HERE!

Hi Bronco Families!

Coach Shalash here. The coaching staff is very excited to begin our annual kick arounds in late May. Please make sure you have an updated physical in order to participate. These kick around sessions are not mandatory, but highly encouraged. They give the coaches an opportunity to evaluate your skills before the official try out in July.

The summer schedule is live. Please click on “summer schedule” to find those dates. Our 2019 tentative game schedule is also available.

Click on the Youth Camp Sign Up link to register your child for our soccer camp. Last year, we had over 100 players participate. Be sure to do so before the end of the month to receive a discounted rate. The link is provided.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact me at omar.shalash@fayette.kyschools.us – or by phone, 859-559-5423.

#Be Great

Lindsey Wilson Camp (Final Post from 11th Grader, Drew Rodriguez)

This camp has been more than a training and team bonding experience. It was where we truly realized how special our team is. We’re not the strongest, fastest, or tallest, but we sure fight the hardest. While the other team’s bench is stiff and quiet, ours is cleared and pumping up our teammates on the field. We fought tooth and nail against every other team, and our younger guys, especially, feared no man or team. They would be twice our size, literally, and our guys would try to body them. This was a testament to what our coaches have pushed us to embody, and what our players have embraced.

The first day excitement was high. After moving into our dorms, we went straight to training. Coach Reuben put us to work with very focused and purposeful training. We were just starting to put ourselves together, and it took some time to get into the swing of it. Throughout that day, we were constantly reminded that we had to hydrate, and the heat we experienced in the afternoon’s training session proved it was a necessity. That night we played against two very good teams, and despite losing one and drawing the other, we all left with our heads high because we knew we outplayed the other team pound for pound.

The second day may have been the most memorable. It was a good start in the morning because we got to play on the soccer field instead of the five minute drive to the football field. Coach TC started us with a very positive attitude, and made sure we maintained it. Our training always had purpose and we were constantly absorbing information that we can put to use this season and beyond. Coach TC, and all coaches for that matter, understood that it was important that the game transcended beyond good playing, and that we had to have fun to play good. After the morning, we came back to the dorms and began watching the FIFA World Cup game, and as our luck had it, the afternoon session was cancelled due to thunderstorms, so we got to finish watching the game. It was a nail biter to the end, with 10 of us cramped in one room watching it and the rest hooping and hollering watching the game in the lobby, That night, Coach TC changed our formation, and instead of falling apart under confusion, we adapted to it in the first half and maintained possession. We were organized, efficient, and sharp. Again, we lost both games, but the result mattered very little to us when Coach TC revealed how special we were as a team to him and that he’d had the most fun coaching us in years. He genuinely spoke it through his physical expression as well, and we all left very impressed and with a newfound confidence in ourselves. He even wanted to take a picture with the team.

The third day our bodies were starting to feel it, but we pushed through and Coach Sutherland made good use out of us. He pushed the transition aspect of the game, and as evidenced in that night’s games, we learned a lot from it. The JV game was played almost entirely by our youngest players, and the other team had almost their full varsity squad in by the end of the game, but our guys fought through it. We were sacrificing our bodies and pushing our minds. Coach TC came and watched our game, and afterwards we had a party. Sparklers, pizza, candy, it was the whole shebang. We were left feeling very satisfied with our performance. we were also very thankful to our coaches for making the environment as fun as it was, and our session coaches for being so positive and embracing our team so much.

Now it’s our last day, and we’re still going to go hard. We’ve given it our all, for our coaches, for our school, and most importantly, for each other. We had our fun, watching soccer and having Fortnite sessions, but we also handled business, and did so with class. Overall, a big win for our team. We’ve been saying it all along, and our session coaches repeated it, Kentucky better watch out because Frederick Douglass is coming.

-Drew

Lindsey Wilson Camp (Day 2)

Good morning all!

Yesterday, we ate breakfast around 7:30, followed by an intense session that focused on defensive roles and positioning. Our coach for the day was former Asbury and Midway soccer coach, TC Correjoelles. He did an amazing job with the boys. Directly after that session, we had lunch together. With us having the early session, we had a lot of free time for sleeping and fortnite. The boys are really bonding and it’s fun to see them grow with one another.

We watched the first half of the World Cup Semi-Final (Go Croatia) together. Once halftime started, we walked down to the soccer field for session #2. Unfortunately, mother nature did not want us to practice and the boys (plus 40 others) came back to finish the rest of the WC game in our dorm lobby. What a game to watch together, a lot of excitement and drama!

After the game, we had about 4 hours to hang out. The sleeping and forniting resumed. Check out my instagram (coachshalash) story to see the boys reaction to one of their teammates getting a win, lol. We ate dinner together and then relaxed before our two games. Once we got to the field, we were on a little delay due to a team not arriving on time. Coach Neto told me there’s only one true JV team here and that we would be playing two varsity level squads. The first of those was Madison Southern. Coach TC went with 4-2-3-1. The boys were very rusty and it took them time to adjust to the system, but they really shined in the second half. I didn’t take official stats, but I’d say we had about 15 goal scoring opportunities. Madison Southern had one or two. It was one of those games where you deserve to score, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen. Regardless, Coach TC, Parker, P, and my self are extremely proud of what they did that game.

The second game was against a mix of four different high schools. They were talented and fast. Our true JV team started the game. The guys balled out the first half. They really set the tempo and fought hard on every 50/50 ball. We were playing so well that their coach put in his “stars” to balance out the game. I wish I had taken a picture of how big they were compared to our guys. The first half ended 0-0. After halftime, the opposing team scored two goals to beat us. Even though we didn’t get the result, it was such an amazing night. Quoting coach TC, “I haven’t had this much fun in a very long time, I love you guys, so glad I was able to coach you all.” The reasoning behind his quote isn’t because we’re so young, it’s because we’re so full of life and energy. Every player stood on the sideline and cheered for their brothers. It was all real and not forced. Coaches that were watching even joined our side. Anytime something happened, you could hear the boys shouting and giving their teammates the love they deserve.

So proud of these guys. Every body on campus keeps giving the coaches compliments on how well-mannered the boys are, it’s a testament to what we’re trying to build…. something very, very special!

Lindsey Wilson Camp (Day 1)

Mornin’ from Columbia, Kentucky:

First off, thank you to all the parents and grandparents that helped get the guys to camp yesterday. Check-in ended around 9:15. Directly after that, we went to the gym, where Coach Neto talked to the campers about what they should expect and his goals for the camp. We then settled into our dorms. After a long period of down time, we carpooled to the football field for training session #1 (focus on possession and directional play). The boys worked extremely hard. Our coach for the day, Rueben Rodriguez (Head Coach at Berea College), spoke very highly of the boys. He was excited for us coaches and gave the guys a lot of one-on-one advice.

We got back to the dorms and went directly to lunch(the guys pigged out). I think they’re loving this place. After that, we had our 2nd session of the day. This session focused on re-direction and changing the pace of the game. The drills were extremely simple, but very meaningful. The sun was shinning very bright and a few players crapped up, but are recovering as of today. After that, we returned back to the dorms to relax till our game. Once we got to the field, we were informed that our team was split into two (Varsity and JV). Every one played in the varsity game, but only 8th graders and a few 9th graders played in the JV.

I put together the starting line up for Coach Rueben. We ran a 4-4-2 in both games. Once the game started, the guys jumped on UH. We dominated possession and really did a good job on moving the ball. Players were talking and moving off the ball. We gave up the first goal on a tough break. As we were dominating tempo, UH countered and got a 1v1 chance. The best part is how we responded. 3 minutes later, Ryan played a great ball into space to Kings and he placed the ball into the corner. Tie game. Five minutes later, Tanner played Kings again and he buried it. Boom, 2-1. We went into the half excited but honestly, a little over confident. It’s fine though, they earned it after fighting back and I don’t mind them having a chip on their shoulder.

After half time, we gave them two goals within minutes. The guys looked rattled and heads started to go down. Even after that, they dug deep and refocused. With about 10 minutes to play, Kings earned a foul around the 18 yard box. Before he could take it, I asked him to let James take it. Not necessarily because James is a better shooter than Kings, but because I watched James take over 20 free kicks at practice. He practiced it all by himself before and after practice. The kid stepped up and buried a beauty. Tie game. With 2 minutes left, UH took the ball in-line and got the game winner. While we lost the game, I’m extremely proud of the effort from all players. Both Middle and High School players stepped up against Juniors and Seniors. Coach Rueben was extremely proud as well. By the end of the game, we had 4 starters on the bench with an injury. While we want to win games, our priority is safety and recovery. It was a long day and players weren’t happy about coming out, but it’s my responsibility to makes calls like that….for them.

The JV game started directly after the whistle. Only two Varsity players had to be subbed in due to injuries (they played about 3 minutes), the rest of the game was played by middle school players and 9th graders. The guys balled out. Moved the ball non-stop and really communicated well. They had goal scoring opportunities but couldn’t finish. It went to the half 0-0, after halftime, the boys buckled down and Collier scored his first goal for FDHS (began playing soccer in April). Luke played a great ball to him and he slipped it by the goalie. 1-0. 10 minutes left. Pulaski is really pushing for another goal. You can tell the coach put in his older players to get an equalizer 🙂 – The boys buckled down and kept fighting. Took every shot they had. With 10 seconds (literally), their forward slipped it by Max (played out of his mind). The game ended in a draw.

For many of these players, last night was the first time they’ve ever represented Douglass soccer in a real game. Not only did they do it with pure class, they grew a lot with one another. You can see the passion in the eyes and how hungry they were for success. Even with the pain, they fought through two sessions in 100 degree heat, and really took huge strides for the better. We all left the field last night tired, but proud of what we did. As their coach, I’m also very proud of what they did and continue to do.

And that’s only Day 1 – hoping Day 2 is even better! Be sure to follow us on Facebook for more updates!

#BeGreat