It’s tournament time for high school soccer. It’s the only sport I played growing up and stopped at age 51. I also spent 40 years coaching at different levels, so I guess you could call me “avid.”
There were three games last night and I had to choose. My alma mata was playing, one of the schools I coached and a really good local team. I chose the really good team to ride my bike to watch, Dartmouth High, and wasn’t disappointed.
At the half it was 3-0 and early in the second 40, Dartmouth got their fourth. I was feeling the beginnings of rain coming on and decided to leave early for the 7 mile ride home. I got a little wet but not bad. Riding through the city I could see driver eyeing me and couldn’t help wondering if they were envious of me riding in the soft rain on a mild evening , or thinking, “oh that poor guy. He must have lost his drivers license.”
Night Ride to Dartmouth, Ma Soccer Game from John Sullivan on Vimeo.
I got a call that my niece’s football team was playing their final home match of the season. Also the team was celebrating senior night. A 5 PM start under a full moon made this a great night for a bike ride. There are a few Full Moon Fiascos going on around the country. If your not familiar with them it’s worth checking out. There are chapters in Chicago, Illinois, Sandpoint, Iowa, Spokane, Washington, St. Louis, Missouri and of course, Fairhaven, Massachusetts. Check the website for next months ride.
The stadium was around eight miles away from my home and there was a busy city between her town and mine. Fortunately I grew up in the city and knew every which way to avoid most of the traffic and still have a very direct route to the stadium. It was so direct that I got there an hour before the scheduled start. It was getting chilly and I was starting to Jones for some coffee. The nearest spot was a -11 around a mile away. Having done many long distance tours, it’s not a big deal to back track a few miles for trivial reasons. Coffee was not trivial which made back tracking a mile kind of a no brainer. It was a coffee stop but doesn’t qualify for my coffeeneuring challenge.
The Dartmouth girls team was far superior to their opponent from Fall River which gave the coach a chance to play the seniors who normally don’t get a lot of playing time. With the score 2-0 and Dartmouth in full control, the officials awarded them a penalty kick. All the regular players gathered around one of those seniors and told her to take the spot kick. It was incredible. No keeper in the world at any level could have made the save on this one. It reminds me of a quote by golfer Lee Trevino when he said, “Every golfer has professional shots in him. The only difference is that the pros do it regularly”. This day #24 for Dartmouth had a world class moment, and everyone loved it.