A publication of Keeper! Club
Written and edited by Jim Walker
January 2010
A publication of the Keeper Club
Written and edited by Jim Walker
JANUARY TRAINING Training resumes Thursday, January 7, for keepers 10-to-18-years-old as 2010 begins, continuing on Mondays (5:30pm) with Roland Sikinger and Thursdays (5:30pm) with Jim Walker. Fee for regular training in 2010 remains at $50 ($100 if not playing for Cy-Fair Youth Soccer Club or Dynamos) for 10 weeks of sessions. Please make check payable to Keeper Club and mail to Dynamos, attn: Loree, 10924 Grant Rd. #224, Houston77070. For more information, email JWalker332@aol.com or phone 281-217-1612.
HOLIDAY MAGIC For the Keeper Club’s senior goalkeeper, Patty Walrath, the Christmas-week trip with the under-18 Dynamos for the Orange Classic International Girls Tournament was something to remember. A holiday excursion to sunny Florida, for sure, but no beaches or nightlife for the busy team, with five games in four days sandwiched between two lengthy days of travel. Patty was fulltime keeper as the Dynamos won four of five games to finish atop the standings in their college showcase bracket. Patty notched 2-0 shutouts over New York East Patriots and Tampa Blue Lightning, and yielded one goal in each of two 2-1 wins, over Coral Springs Storm and Plantation Eagles. The only loss came at the hands of Colorado Storm, 2-1, with the winning goal scored on a penalty shot. Nearly 300 college coaches scouted the 50-team showcase portion of the overall tournament, which included more than 300 teams of all ages.
 PARTY AN INSIDE JOBBecause of bad weather and field closings at DyessPark, the Keeper Club’s annual Christmas party went inside in 2009. Minutes away from a decision to postpone because of ill weather and soggy fields, friendly softball folks offered use of their new building. So an old-fashioned gab session replaced the traditional outdoor workout and the party went on as scheduled for fifteen keepers and guests, who dined on pizza, Powerade, beautifully-constructed cupcakes (with a soccer ring on top), gingerbread cutouts, sugar cookies, and brownies. Highlight of the gathering was enjoyment of each other's company, young and old. The circle of discussion included comments from each keeper about what they liked least and best about playing the position (heading the list: breakaways--the agony of failing and the thrill of saving). The Krazy Keeper gift exchange was conducted with grace and dignity--no yelling, crying or throwing of unwanted objects. Most apropos gift received? Probably Ronni Pierce, drawing a first aid kit--she needs the bandaids and Neosporin for her cuts and bruises! Sabrina Pasier, a past Keeper Club trainee not only returned to renew acquaintances but walked off with prizes--a jar full of mixed confection (for the closest guess of candies in the jar) and a new soccer ball (in a drawing). Winning, for the second straight year, new soccer balls awarded for most training appearances during 2009 were Kaitrin Miller, Patty Walrath, and Ronni Pierce. Another award recipient was Grant Steppe, whose previous success at hitting the crossbar with a kicked ball caused Coach Walker to concede the canceled Powerade Challenge. Other keepers attending were Taylor Elliott, Cameron Rieth, Ethan Maxson, Marissa Mills, Kelsi Gibson, Trevor Gibson, Francesco Lo Sauro, Alyssa Bradley, Kaylee Barrett, Damon Mosher, and Kevin Hobart. Other guests include Steven Gonzalez and Von Alanis. Thanks to Jennifer Miller and Connor Miller for their yeoman work in organizing things and cleaning up afterward. Also assisting were the Steppe family, the Elliott family, Reed Maxson, Julie Gibson, Aleks Alanis, and Kreg Barrett. Thanks to all for a wonderful evening.
    NEW YEAR’S PUZZLERS There are a few things you can really count on. The sun coming up, the sun going down, and, oh yes, Coach Walker laying out corny old riddles every year. So here’s his year-end list of eye-rollers. See how many you can get before  looking at the answers, at the end of the newsletter. 1. Why doesn’t Braden Mann like to eat snails? 2. According to Coach Roland, what are the three saddest words in soccer? 3. Why does Kaitrin Miller think it’s a good idea to play soccer in the graveyard? 4. What does a Keeper! Club member become after the age of ten? 5. Veronica Pierce is sure she knows the greatest bet every made. Do you? 6. Trevor Gibson claims he knows why elephants have wrinkled ankles. Do you?   7. What has two wings and flies high, but keeps its feet on the ground and eats lots of pizza? 8. What’s another name for the soccer played by Cy-Fair’s Pre-K and K teams? 9. Who is the Dynamos’ Director of Training? A) Olivia Newton-John; b) Laurence Olivier; c) Olivia De Haviland; d) Olivier Finidori. !0. You can improve your flexibility by: a) eating lots of pretzels; b) sleeping in a box of rubber bands; c) bending to touch your toes; d) pushing buttons on your phone.
 COLLEGE KEEPERS RATED In a poll of analysts for Soccer America, North Carolina’s Ashlyn Harris and Penn State’s Alyssa Naeher were considered top prospects among college goalkeepers for the 2010 Women’s Professional Soccer draft, scheduled Jan. 15 at the National Soccer Coaches Association of America convention in Philadelphia. Others receiving votes were Kristin Olsen of the University of Southern California; Kelsey Davis, Portland University; Erin Guthrie, Rutgers; and Mallori Lofton-MalachI, South Florida. The voters included soccer experts from Soccer America, Soccer News Net, The Soccer Magazine, ESPN.com and Womensprosoccer.com.
KEEPERTALK Kaylee Barrett, who spends most of her time playing keeper, went on the field long enough to score her team’s only goal in the U12 Dynamos’ lone victory in the Thanksgiving Tournament (a win, two ties and a loss). . .During the fall season, Kelsi Gibson had a big save of a penalty kick the same day as big brother Trevor squelched one, too. . .Former Dynamos and Keeper Club members Andrew Klink and Ben Pruitt were named as kickers on Houston Chronicle all-district high school football teams. Both were productive field goal and point-after booters for their respective teams, Andrew at Cy-Woods and Ben at The Woodlands. . .Watch for the blossoming of a whole new crop of young goalkeepers this spring. Among those ready to emerge as solid net minders are Taylor Elliott, Cameron Rieth, Grant Steppe, Marissa Mills, Madison Brown, Ethan Maxson, and Samantha Adrianson. . .Senior Patty Walrath plays bass fiddle in the Cy-Woods HS concert orchestra. A friend asked: “Why do you like playing bass?” Patty replied: “I can talk a lot more while the violinists fix their problems!” By the way, it‘s “Captain“ Patty now that her Cy-Woods varsity teammates voted her to be their leader for the 2010 season. . .Former longtime Keeper Club member Grant Hesketh is a sophomore at Syracuse University, studying chemical engineering. . .Jonathan Kauffman, home after his freshman season with Ouachita Baptist University, planned to worked with Coach Walker during the holidays. . .Hope Solo became the first keeper ever to win U. S. Female Athlete of the Year honors with the 2009 award. She was named MVP of the Algarve Cup in Portugal in March after leading the U. S. to the championship over Sweden and also helped St. Louis Athletica to a second-place finish in Women's Professional Soccer's regular season. . .University of Virginia’s Diego Restrepo stopped a second-half penalty kick to register his 11th shutout in a row to help the Cavaliers reach the College Cup (NCAA title game) with a 3-0 victory over Maryland. . .Manchester City’s Shay Given saved a late penalty from Frank Lampard to defeat Premier League leaders Chelsea, 2-1 in December. . .If you have items for Keeper! or KeeperTalk, please email JWalker332@aol.com or call 281-217-1612.
  TRAINING LOG Listing of players who attended training in December: 3--Kaitrin Miller, Ronni Pierce, Braden Mann, Kelsi Gibson, Grant Steppe, Marissa Mills, Jordan Nassiarian, Kaylee Barrett, Alyssa Bradley, Damon Mosher 7--Nasty Weather 10--Ethan Maxson, Alyssa Bradley, Kaylee Barrett, Francesco Lo Sauro, Patty Walrath, Ronni Pierce, Samantha Adrianson, Marissa Mills, Grant Steppe, Jordan Nassirian, Kaitrin Miller, Guest instructor: Clayton Harris 14--Nasty Weather again 17 (Christmas party)--Taylor Elliott, Ethan Maxson, Kaylee Barrett, Alyssa Bradley, Ronni Pierce, Patty Walrath, Francesco Lo Sauro, Marissa Mills, Kaitrin Miller, Grant Steppe, Cameron Rieth, Damon Mosher, Trevor Gibson, Kelsi Gibson, Kevin Hobart, Sabrina Pasier
QUOTABLE"When I was a kid, because I was already tall, I was a center half. Then suddenly, one day, our goalkeeper wasn't there, he had a party to go to or something, I don't know, we were only 8 or 9 years old. The manager said: 'Edwin, you're the tallest, you're in goal today', and probably I did quite well and was never allowed to play out again."--Edwin van der Sar, goalkeeper, Manchester Utd, answering the question: "How did you become a goalkeeper?"
TIP OF THE MONTH“The rules stay the same regardless of the level you’re playing. The higher the level, the bigger the stage, the more determined, the more stubborn, the more mentally tough you have to become. There’s no more to it. Your self-confidence will take a beating every now and then, but stick to the basic principles of goalkeeping, stick with that mental toughness I keep talking about, what I feel is the basic foundation for being a goalkeeper, and you’ll come through it.”--Shaka Hislop, legendary Trinidad & Tobago goalkeeper who played for West Ham, Newcastle United, Reading and Portsmouth in the English Premier League.
KEEPING SECRETS New jersey--$50. New gloves--$50. New shoes--$50. Leadership--Priceless! Develop and put to use your leadership skills. The jersey, gloves, and shoes will benefit you and help you reach your goals, but leadership will help the whole team reach its full potential. In Keeper Club, we are seeing senior keepers like Patty Walrath and Ronnie Pierce, and others, too, come up with a big play and not make a big deal of it. . .just bound up and check to see if their teammates are organized for quick distribution or a corner. And, if they make a mistake, they don’t make a big deal of it either. . .no slamming of fists together or kicking at goal posts, no crying, no covering their eyes, no lying on the ground. They pop up, survey the field and, if necessary, direct their teammates to take positions and face the next situation. They are leading by showing their teammates that the opponent will have to be better to score, or in the case of a mistake, that they have confidence it won’t happen again.
ANSWERS TO PUZZLERS 1) Because he prefers fast food; 2) Rain--No Game; 3) You can always dig up another player; 4) Eleven; 5) The alphabet; 6) They lace their boots too tight; 7) a Dynamos team; 8) Special K; 9) d; 10) c.
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