Day 1, Mon, 8-27-18 – meeting (welcome, team, captains, etc.); stretching; fitness; 50 touches right, left, up, head (10 each); Uruguay warm-up; conveyor belt; diamond passing pattern; 1 v 1 and then 2 v 2 to goal
Day 2, Tues, 8-28-18 – square warm-up (cut around cones; self-pass inside cones, etc.); technique work on shooting / striking the ball (call your shot); rotating shooting pattern (starts next to goal, diagonal across, down, diagonal, shot; follow pass); Zenit shooting game (bisected rectangle; dribble-shoot then defend on other side); 3 goal game with shooting before; bread and butter? [no bread and butter and added in the shoot a rolling ball drill before the rotating shooting pattern; otherwise, this worked great]
Day 3, Wed, 8-29-18 – scrimmage against freshmen
Day 4, Thurs, 8-30-18 – program-wide activity; bags and warm-ups distribution; diagnostics, free / penalty kicks, corners, throw-ins, formation, etc.
Day 5, Fri, 8-31-18 – 10 AM scrimmage at Westwood; bus departure TBA. Good showing against Westwood: 3-1 loss, but that’s the best we’ve done against them since we’ve been scrimmaging them. First half we didn’t play very well but that was also because I found a better combination of positions for the 2nd half (many of which were different from last year). They won the 1st half 3-0; we won the 2nd half 1-0, goal by ES. See game report here: 0 – Westwood Scrimmage.
Day 6, Tues, 9-4-18 – practice on the Rock – 6-Defending and Attacking The small sided game eventually worked well but we need more attackers in the middle (we ended up with three because of numbers; two probably would have done it). And didn’t get to the back-to-the-offense game.
Day 7, Wed, 9-5-18 – at Westford. 7-0 loss. Tough one because of numbers and the heat. We played a strong 15 minutes or so but were worn down as the game went on.
Day 8, Thurs, 9-6-18 – practice on the back field – going light today because team is tired from yesterday and game tomorrow – in no particular order – UNC skills contest (header – ball on ground); juggling call out; UNC circle in and out; blindfold find the ball; anatomy dribble; monster tag; clearance drill; maybe diamond passing pattern
Day 9, Fri, 9-7-18 – AB home. Lost 6-2 but tied 2-2 into the 64th minute, our best showing against AB in probably a decade. We played well and hard. They scored 2 mins in but we fought back and threw them off their game. Halftime it was 1-1 and two mins into the second half their coach called time out, a victory right there. Ultimately we ran out of gas (our three subs vs their 10) but a great showing for us despite the score.
Day 10, Tues, 9-11-18 – practice on the Rock – 10 – Passing & Shooting [passing through game and first shooting game got bogged down]
Day 11, Wed, 9-12-18 – practice on the Rock – 11 – Balls out of the Air; Changing Point of Attack [rained out]
Day 12, Thurs, 9-13-18 – practice on the softball field – fitness; passing through the middle square; passing diamond; dribble circuit; diagonal attack two goals; four goal game; handball
Day 13, Fri, 9-14-18 – at Waltham. 7-0 win. Good to get the first win. Didn’t play particularly well in the first half; too much up the middle. Pulled a forward back and that took the focus off of the middle and allowed us to spread things out better.
Day 14, Mon, 9-17-18 – practice on the softball field – [see 9-12 practice]
Day 15, Tues, 9-18-18 – at Ashland [rained out]
Day 16, Thurs, 9-20-18 – practice on the Rock – fitness, anatomy dribble, chase each other around the cone; corner keep away; short sided with multiple goals and/or channels; bigger scrimmage with focus on width [lost the phone pre-practice, so didn’t have the plan with me; didn’t get to the chase-around-the-cone]
Day 17, Fri, 9-21-18 – at Cambridge Rindge and Latin – 3-2 loss. Tried two centerbacks because had MT from varsity and wasn’t sure whom to play at sweeper, so I figured I’d play them both. It was interesting. The two centerbacks played too far back and so really stretched out the middle, creating too much room. But, even with that, it was an interesting experiment and went ok. Down 2-1 at half after a questionable goal by them at the end of the half: pretty sure time had run out but the ref had forgotten about it. We dominated the first half of the second half but didn’t score. They put one more in and we did with maybe 5 mins left but couldn’t get the third to tie.
Day 18, Mon, 9-24-18 – practice on the back field – 18 – Defending + running in a circle to a ball in the middle & three in the middle to either side + call the number out
Day 19, Tues, 9-25-18 – BLS home – [rained out]
Day 20, Wed, 9-26-18 – practice on the back field – back field was a mess so had to scrap the plan: did the circle 1 v 1 game and the red rover-ish game and then did some conditioning and watched the freshman game
Day 21, Thurs, 9-27-18 – practice on the back field – back field was closed so grabbed a slice of turf from the boys: worked on volleys and got some touches in and then did conditioning
Day 22, Fri, 9-28-18 – [no practice]
Day 23, Sat, 9-29-18 – at Cohasset – well that was frustrating; 2-1 loss after we dominated the game but just couldn’t put one (or 2 I suppose) in; they scored from a corner that squirted out and was put right back in and a counterattack with 30 seconds left; we scored with maybe 10 mins left
Day 24, Mon, 10-1-18 – practice on the softball field – 50 touches; variation on volley: three people, two balls, must return to someone without a ball; crossing practice (focus on technique, then play it out to crossers, focus on balls in the air and pulling it back to the 18); shooting with volleys and half volleys; discuss compact defense
Day 25, Tues, 10-2-18 – CC home – Ugly. 6-0 loss. They took it to us early and we were intimidated. A better second half. We came at them a bit more and slowed things down somewhat, but they passed and moved well and we couldn’t keep up with them.
Day 26, Wed, 10-3-18 – practice on the back field – no real field so conditioning, juggling exercises, and soccer tennis
Day 27, Thurs, 10-4-18 – Weston home – 1-0 win. We outplayed and outshot them but just couldn’t put more than one in (sound familiar…?), but at least we put one in. We did better on crossing, which I’m pleased about because we worked on that on Monday and it seemed to help.
Day 28, Fri, 10-5-18 – [no practice]
Day 29, Tues, 10-9-18 – no field (officially) – conditioning and ball work and then we’ll be on the turf to share with varsity when they take over the turf at 4.00
Day 30, Wed, 10-10-18 – practice on the back field – 30 – Short Sided Games
Day 31, Thurs, 10-11-18 – LS away – [rained out; make-up: 10/29]
Day 32, Fri, 10-12-18 – [no practice]
Day 33, Sat, 10-13-18 – Ashland away (make-up) – [rained out; make-up TBD but I’m not optimistic]
Day 34, Mon, 10-15-18 – Waltham home – 2-1 win. Dominated (mostly) the first half, but only put one in; their keeper made some nice saves. Had trouble transitioning from midfield to offense, so in 2nd half moved a third forward up. This had the desired effect, putting them under more pressure, but also exposed us a bit at the back (not entirely unexpected). But we put one in and were able to hold them off.
Day 35, Tues, 10-16-18 – practice on the back field – 35-Ball Work and Shooting
Day 36, Wed, 10-17-18 – BLS away – Wow. Apocalyptic. That’s the only way to describe those conditions. I’ve played in hairy conditions at Millennium Park before but this was nutty. We went into the wind first half and just held on. They scored 2. They blitzed us at the outset of the 2nd half and scored another. We calmed down and got 2 back but that was it. Lost 3-2 after howling winds the whole game, rain, and a 10-15 degree temperature drop.
Day 37, Thurs, 10-18-18 – practice TBD (no field) – ended up practicing with the freshmen because their game was cancelled last minute, so we did warm-up, stations, and freshmen v JV madness
Day 38, Fri, 10-19-18 – Newton South home – lost 3-0 to a better team but we played relatively well
Day 39, Mon, 10-22-18 – practice on the softball field – Day 39 – Touch & Passing – the two box, in-and-out game / drill worked great, weirdly so: they played two touch soccer (mostly) without me forcing them to do and there was a lot of movement off the ball and communication
Day 40, Tues, 10-23-18 – Bedford home – 6-0 win – not much of a game (5-0 at half) but played relatively well. Moved the ball well but they also gave us a ton of space within which to work.
Day 41, Wed, 10-24-18 – practice on the softball field – 50 touches, chase around the cones, header ‘shooting’, soccer golf
Day 42, Thurs, 10-25-18 – Weston away – won 4-2. Back and forth in the first half (tied 2-2 at half I think) but we opened it up in the 2nd half. I think they ran out of gas and/or focus.
Day 43, Fri, 10-26-18 – [no practice; at conference; thought season would be over]
Day 44, Mon, 10-29-18 – LS away (make-up) – [rained out]
Day 45, Tues, 10-30-18 – LS away (make-up of the make-up) – lost 5-1. Played relatively well (scored first) against a better team, but they were also checked out / toying with us (which was kind of annoying, but I get it).
End of Season. Finished 5-8. Could have won two of those losses, definitely should have won 1 of them (Cohasset; still argh). For a roster of 14, down to 13 after an injury midway through the season, we played well. Having the freshmen and juniors to round out the roster certainly helped but, even without them, we played a good brand of soccer, and the girls seemed to enjoy the season, so overall a success. (The first L below, against Westwood, was a scrimmage.)