Being an MKSC intern means that part of my duties include working tournaments and special events. Some of the tasks I perform include anything from parking, to photographing the teams and coaches, to working at the merchandise table. Last weekend I had the chance to put my skills to the test at The Wisconsin Youth Soccer Association State Championship/State Cup at Uihlein Soccer Park.
I spent most of my day field marshaling throughout the park. As a field marshal my job is to survey the play at a number of fields, and report any injuries or problems that occur. I enjoy this responsibility because it means that when there is down time I can watch the games. Also, while at the field marshal tent I was able to interact with many referees, fans, and players.
Three qualities I saw time and time again throughout the day were teamwork, competitiveness, and sportsmanship. I saw teamwork when I watched a team rally back from a 3-0 deficit to win the game. I saw competitiveness when a player slid feet first for a ball that was going out of bounds, save the ball, and then continue on to weave through three players for a goal. I saw sportsmanship when I watched two players from the opponents' team help a girl to the sideline who had injured her leg while playing.
In addition to field marshaling, I was able to roam the fields and take photos for a portion of the day. During this time, I witnessed the emotion and attentiveness that the parents had for their players. Clearly being a soccer parent requires time, commitment, and can be stressful, but I saw parents that were positive, encouraging and building their children up regardless of the situation.
Win or lose, all 88 teams that qualified to play in the tournament, and the supporters who helped them get there, should be extremely proud of their accomplishment.