Eric Gettes and his colleagues are hoping to raise the level of soccer in Clinton.
“The Clinton Soccer Club is offering a free soccer clinic Saturday, June 5, from 9 to 10:30 a.m.,” said Gettes, Clinton High School girls soccer coach. “The clinic will be held on the Ashford University soccer field.”
Gettes said the Clinton Soccer Club was just being organized and at present there was but one team.
“We would like to have a minimum of six to eight teams, both boys and girls (six to eight boys teams and six to eight girls teams),” Gettes said. “The club director is Mick Regan, Ashford University women’s soccer coach, and he will be conducting the clinic.
“The purpose of the clinic is to help form teams for the club so Clinton soccer can become more competitive to play in the Mississippi Athletic Conference, which Clinton is a member of,” Gettes said.
He explained the present setup in the Quad Cities is a local club with many teams that youngsters have easy access to.
“Through this club youngsters start playing with each other and against each other,” he said. “By the time they start playing in high school, they have been playing with each other and are familiar with how teammates play, making cohesive units. That will be our goal with the Clinton Soccer Club.”
Gettes explained there is YMCA soccer, but that is more participation oriented.
“The soccer club would be a more competitive league with quality soccer instruction,” Gettes said. “This is for those with real interest in skills, wanting to know more about the game and developing their skills.
This does not mean that anyone who is a club member cannot play Y soccer, for they will be able to, Gettes explained.
The goal of club organizers are teams for both boys and girls from grades four through eight and two high school teams, both boys and girls. There are two soccer seasons - spring and fall. The fall season begins in August and the spring season gets under way in late March or early April. There would probably be eight-game seasons.
Following the clinic, players will be given a chance to register as club members, and teams will be formed according to age groups. The goal is having a boys and girls team for each grade, fourth through eighth. The goal is also having two high school teams, both boys and girls.
The cost for club membership is $100 per season.
“This cost is way under club cost in other parts of the state,” Gettes said. “Some club membership is as much as $1,000. The membership fee includes registration, player cards, insurance and access to coaching. During the year there will be free clinics also given by Coach Regan.”