Soccer coaches step up
SOCCER: Training for the junior soccer season kicked off last Wednesday in Monto, with initial line-ups looking promising.
Typically, there are five age groups; under sevens, under nines, under-12s, under-13s and under-16s.
This year will be a little bit different because the under-13s and under-16s may have to combine to bulk up the numbers.
As the older students graduate high school, the younger ones occasionally need to step up and fill in the gaps.
Monto State High PE teacher Anthony Gronert, who coached the under-16s and under-13s teams, said it was a good way to push the younger players to develop.
"It is pretty tough when you play the Bilo teams and they're mostly under-16 players, but the guys stepped up pretty well last year when that happened,” Gronert said.
Last year, the under 16s often needed to be topped up with the younger guys when there were gaps.
Gronert said it was a challenge to address that difference.
"Apart from the physicality and size difference, as long as they have the skills they can go okay,” he said.
"You just have to work with the players and where they're comfortable; obviously you're not going to put a young player in centre-back if they're not comfortable with that position.”
Monto Junior Soccer has seen an upheaval, with a new president and treasurer, and new coaches.
Greg Barnett was one such new coach who took the under-12s on Wednesday.
"It's my first time coaching, so I'll be learning along with them,” he said.
"Judging by the names we've had in, we should have plenty of good players in for a team.”
Training will continue every Wednesday afternoon at the Combined Sports Field at 4pm.
There will be three weeks training before the holidays, after which students will start back on Wednesday, April 19 before the first game on April 22.
"We've got a bit of time to get these guys into shape, but there's plenty of enthusiasm,” Gronert said.
Sign-ups close this Saturday, March 25.