Cat showed up for both nights of tryouts and felt like she did really well. But we could hardly believe it when she was not only invited to join the club, but was offered a spot on the higher of the two teams the club has for her age group. Part of this was that she benefited from the timing of the league regulations: the team she was trying out for had been playing on a smaller field with 9 players for each game; for this season the team would be in an older age bracket and they needed to add a few players because they were moving to a bigger field with 11 players for each game. This also worked in Cat's favor for another reason: the team she was on last year played at an older level, so she was already used to playing on the bigger field with 11 players.
|Modeling the new uniform!|
(right after she took a post-practice shower)
It was a tough couple of days while we all deliberated about soccer. Should we stick with a team and coach we felt confident about, or go out on a limb with new people? Will it really be worth the extra cost? How will the time commitment affect our family? In the end, we decided to go with the new team. It was a decision we all felt good about and haven't regretted. Cat's confidence and skill have improved and she appreciates playing at a more competitive level.
|During Cat's first official scrimmage with the team in mid-July,|
they won 7-0, with Cat scoring two goals and one or more assists.
|Training for fun, when coach canceled practice but a group of girls|
wanted to get together to work out anyway.
She rested more and tried to take it easy, and we hoped she'd be able to participate in her team's first pre-season tournament in Park City at the end of July, but after going in for just a few minutes, the pain was too much and she sat out the rest of the tournament. The team did pretty well but didn't advance after the first round of games, and Cat hated having to watch from the sidelines, unable to help.
|Cat is stretching on the right, while the rest of the team was warming-up for the first game.|
After that we decided she should see a sports medicine doctor. The doctor wanted to do x-rays to be sure that there was no damage to Cat's growth plates, which there wasn't. Thankfully, the diagnosis was strained hip flexor and quad muscles, and the doctor's orders were for Cat to do physical therapy exercises independently and to bike or swim but avoid running for two weeks. After that, she should let the pain be her guide. Cat did a great job of going through her exercises every day and made an effort to exercise in other ways that would not irritate her leg.
One of the other parents on Cat's team recommended a massage therapist who works specifically with athletes, and largely young athletes. Cat felt like the two sessions she had with Natalie made a big difference in her recovery.
While Cat was still under doctor's orders not to run, her team played their second pre-season tournament. She watched all the games from the bench again, but this time the team won the tournament, so it was less agonizing.
|Cat getting her medal from her coach after her team won the Utah Cup.|
You could say she played a perfect tournament. No mistakes.
As much as we were all frustrated about Cat's injury, we recognized that it was a blessing that she was hurt in the summer, instead of during the regular season. And I was really impressed that as much as it bothered Cat not to be able to play with her team, she had a great attitude about it and didn't whine or complain, but kept working at her PT exercises every day and showing up at games to cheer on her teammates. Thankfully, the injury didn't flare up at all during the regular season.