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Drills prep players for soccer matches

Practices pair athletes with teammates for best approximation of games


Soccer matches are packed with one-on-one confrontations as players mark each other up and down the field.

Therefore, many practice sessions also involve drills with players going against another player to simulate game action.

“We try to create a competitive atmosphere with some technical work,” explained Cherry Creek coach Marcelo Curi. “This generally revolves with players working with and against each other to improve technique. We try and play some tactical soccer following, and yes, we many times compete for shootouts at the end.

“We want to create game conditions as much as possible, and even though some exercises involve limited players and touches on the ball, they all have value in their purpose.”

Senior Zach Tripp says Arapahoe coach Mark Hampshire lets his players select some practice drills.

“We play a lot of small side games so it’s a half field, some 6-v-6, sometimes we do 2-v-2 which is a lot of fun,” said Tripp. “We try our hardest to make it like a game. It’s not that much different. We try to push each other the hardest we can.”

Official soccer practice started Aug. 12 and Arapahoe was one of six teams from the Colorado Community Media circulation area that were ranked in the preseason rankings compiled by CHSAANow.com.

Arapahoe was sixth in the Class 5A poll with Cherry Creek ninth and Ralston Valley 10th. D’Evelyn was sixth in the preseason Class 4A poll with Standley Lake seventh. Jefferson Academy was second in Class 3A.

All regular season matches must be completed by Oct. 21. First of three rounds of the state playoffs competition begins Oct. 25. State semifinals are set for Nov. 8 with the state title games for 3A, 4A and 5A scheduled for Nov. 11 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City.

“We work on technique, tactics related to our previous game and upcoming opponents and physical maintenance work,” said Heritage coach Adam Buseck. “We use video analysis to view previous games and show the players positive and negative things they are doing as individuals and in groups.

“We utilize the depth of our program and scrimmage with our JV team a good amount. We work situational concepts this week on how do we adjust when we are winning or losing by one goal, two goals or if we are overmatch playing a strong team.”


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