Graduating from eighth grade no longer means leaving city soccer behind in Park Hills.
New this year is a program for all high school students in grades 9-12. The “3 v 3” soccer league will pit three players against another three in a co-ed competition, said Dooley Politte, the city’s recreation director.
“There has to be at least one girl on a team, and there are no goalies,” he said. “It’s a short field, fast-paced game. They play it a lot inside, but we thought we’d try it outdoors.”
Interested teenagers should sign up by Aug. 28 at the Park Hills City Hall, 9 Bennett Street. Cost is $25 per person. Socks and two shirts will be provided. There are no referee fees.
Games begin Sept. 12. All games will be played in the afternoon at the soccer fields in Haney Park.
Before the season begins, participants will meet and discuss ideas for development of the new program.
Also new this year is a soccer clinic for players, coaches and referees. The free clinic will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 29. Politte hopes the clinic will help in recruiting coaches.
“The hardest part of soccer for me is getting enough coaches,” he said. “A lot of people who would be willing say they just don’t know enough to coach.”
The clinic is designed to teach those potential coaches what they need to know, he said.
Referees will get a refresher course and will help players, he added.
The Park Hills Soccer League for children ages 5 to 14 (grades K through eight) will begin Sept. 12. Deadline for registration is Aug. 21.
To be eligible, a child must be age 5 before Sept. 1 and cannot have turned 15 before Jan. 1, 2009.
Players must bring a copy of their birth certificate, the $30 fee and a completed entry form to city hall by the deadline. Forms are available at city hall.
The fee will pay for shirts, socks, referees, awards, and field equipment. No fund raisers are planned. There will not be a scheduled fun day at the end of the season. Players who complete the season will get a trophy.
Coaches are still needed in each division.
The seventh and eighth grade traveling team must have a minimum of 15 players.
For more information about any of the soccer programs, call 573-431-0478.
Paula Barr is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-431-2010, ext. 172 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.