Coaches from State Fair Community College, Sacred Heart High School and Smith-Cotton High School combined their efforts with Paul Klover Soccer Association to help host the program’s annual youth soccer camp this week at Clover Dell Park.
“I get goosebumps when I talk about it,” said PKSA Executive Board President Amanda Blackburn. “Having all these guys here not only gives them quality training, it helps those kids who want to make it to the next level start building relationships with the right coaches. So, when it is time, they can help them reach that level of play.
“Everyone works together.”
Roadrunners coaches Jaime Beltran and Dan Martin, Smith-Cotton boys soccer coach Ethan Weller and Lady Tigers coach Meredith Brick were among local trainers involved in drills, scrimmages and practices July 6-8 for youth players grades 1-12.
Sacred Heart coach Sam Jones served as coaches coordinator. He said the camp was unique for its age range and camaraderie among local coaches. Many volunteers, such as Smith-Cotton’s Alex Esquivel, Zach Morrison and Tanner McFatrich attended the camp as players and graduated into trainers with collegiate experience.
“That’s the most important thing, is having continuity in coaches,” Jones said. “They’re used to that skill level. They know what to expect.”
Sedalia’s community of soccer coaches came together to lead the camp. Jones said their efforts reflected cooperation outside of camp — citing crossover between S-C and Sacred Heart staffers.
“I hope it’s something that stays in place,” Jones said.
It is the PKSA’s 56th year as an organization. Blackburn said she and everyone involved take pride in continuing — and expanding — Sedalia’s rich soccer tradition.
“We’ve had so many great people work with our organization,” Blackburn said. “They’ve really shown us how it should be run and how it impacts the community.”
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2.