Soccer: Thoughts from games 1 & 2

I got a chance to make it to the girls opener last Thursday. It was fun to watch them beat Marshalltown. I don’t think we ever beat Marshalltown like that when I was coaching. They played well together and had some fun at the same time. I also can’t remember starting off the season undefeated. I know we played Ames first for 3 years and I’m thinking we played at a Valley tournament and got beat by a Council Bluffs team my first year. My second year we won at Valley’s tournament, but I can’t remember if it was the first game or not. Either way to start the season with a win against a 2A team from the CIML is pretty good. It’s a great confidence builder, especially after losing a key player during the week before the game. They are playing well for the new coach and I think he made a good debut also. He is very positive in the paper and I can tell he has a lot of faith in this team and program. I’m glad to see that. We made it to the game, just barely after it started and I spent most of the game talking to the Athletic Director and Marshalltown’s previous coach, then some of the parents, but I was glad to be back. Afterwards some of the girls said hi and were excited to see us. They asked about the wedding and thanked us for coming, it was fun.

They also mentioned the Pella game coming up. Pella is the only team from the Little Hawkeye conference that we haven’t beat yet. It seems like we outplay them every year, but just can’t finish. They usually have a few really good players and control the ball well. They also have a big field, and just like that other team from Pella, it seemed like we always played at their place. They hire local officials and you can never get a break there. My last year coaching there, the college coach from town was the official, so you know he was trying to help out the local girls and get them to his school, it was so frustrating. I did like Pella’s coach though. I didn’t talk to him much, but he was a good guy at the all-conference meeting. So Newton played at Pella again on Tuesday and from everything that I heard, they outplayed them and were in it the whole time, jut had 1 minor let down and Pella squeeked a goal in during the last couple minutes of the first half. I’m proud of the way they played, that’s a tough game to have this early in the year. They are just getting used to a new system and Pella is ranked, and they were able to hold them to 1 goal. Pella only beat us by 1, but we allowed 3 goals. So they are going to have an uphill climb on winning conference and need some help from other teams, but it’s definately possible. I think they can win the rest of their games, they just need someone to beat Pella. Last year I wasn’t as confident, don’t get me wrong, I still think they can beat anyone on a given day, but I drove down on a Tuesday to watch it last year and left with a bad taste in my mouth. It just didn’t feel like they were playing together or were that confident in themselves and the program. This year it’s totally different, they have great senior leadership and those seniors think that’s going to be their last loss. I wouldn’t want to be one of the next couple teams to play them. I’m hoping I can make it back to a few games, but it’s going to be a busy spring/summer leading up to our wedding.

Best of luck to the Cardinals, I’ll be following from 175 miles away. Here’s a couple links to stories about the team and the first couple games. If they links are broken, I can get you a pdf copy of the story. If I missed an article somewhere, be sure to let me know.

Soccer: Season Kick-off




 I’m now counting down the hours until I get to see my first Newton Girls Soccer game of 2009 and it happens to be the season opener, which is even better.  Last year was tough, it was my first year out of coaching and I had to hear from everybody what was going on, who went out, who was practicing well, who wasn’t, if there were any younger players making a contribution.  I also had the chance to hear the other side from the coach.  I really felt like I was part of the team again.  This year I haven’t been quite as informed, but in the last couple days I think I was brought up to speed.  Really not too many big surprises, I feel like even though it’s been 2 seasons, I still have a pretty good idea where people are going to be at and how they are going to do.  There’s always some new faces, but thats to be expected.  I don’t mean this to hurt the feelings of any graduating players, but it seems like Newton just reloads every year and doesn’t have a rebuilding year.  It’s getting harder and harder to make the varsity squad or start, because everyone is so good.  I think the Newton club system is the one to thank for that.  Almost all of these kids played club soccer when they were younger, that can’t be said for the first couple teams I coached and it’s really brought the level of play up and the confidence and expectations of the players.  The first year I coached I had players write down their goals before the season and most of the goals were to get along with everyone.  After we had a good year, the next season the goals were to win half of their games.  We met that one too, and slowly the goals got higher and higher.  The players start to believe in themselves and then who knows what can happen.  My last year the goals were, winning conference, going to state, and being undefeated.  It’s really fun to see that progress into the program they have today.

Tomorrow’s game is versus Marshalltown and is also the first on the new field (I think).  I personally haven’t seen the field yet, but from the few games we played on turf in the past, it definately gives you a home field advantage… if you practice on it.  I don’t know how much work they’ve done on it, but I wish we could’ve played more on one before going to Valley.  The new coach gets a chance to make his debut, I’m real excited for him, i think he’s a great person and I think he’ll do a great job coaching, too.  Marshalltown will be a good opponent to start off the season.  They are always competitive with us.  We had a couple overtime games with them, but win or lose, they’re always close.  They also seem to have a few physical players.  It’s nice that Newton got a couple more days of practice before it’s first game and the first game isn’t against Ames.  That’s never a good way to start the season.  Marshalltown isn’t in our conference anymore, but has always been a rival of ours.

I’m starting to ramble a little, probably because it’s getting late, but Go Cards!  I’m excited to catch up with everyone and cheer them on to victory.   I’m sure I’ll lean a lot more this weekend, and I’ll have more news next time.


So we are on to the 4th rankings now. Of course Newton’s 2-3 record doesn’t look that great, but the loses were to the 2A #11, 1A #2, & 1A #10. So basically it looks like another great year of scheduling has messed up a decent preseason ranking. Obviously the rankings don’t matter and neither does the fact that Newton is not covered by the DMRegister even though we are only 35 miles away. You’d think that we moved out of Iowa, when we dropped out of the CIML. Although I think that the regionals or state pairings are seeded at some point during the year. Which usually goes against our favor. Usually we get paired up with a Valley, Ames, Johnston, Urbandale, or Dowling, but this year Newton is a 1A team so I figured they’d have to be paired up with Norwalk, Pella, Dallas Center Grimes, or someone from Central Iowa that is pretty good. Some how we ended up with the teams that are north and east of us. Which I guess has happened a couple times. Last year we went to Cedar Rapids and my first year we faced Iowa City West (which ended up winning state). So I think the pairings this year could make for a good representation for our conference and central Iowa if things go well. Can you imagine 3 teams from the Little Hawkeye in State? Not the CIML, the Little Hawkeye. I think that would be great, of course I’d plan on a little revenge from regular season loses, but what better picture can you paint for the team that is rebuilding and loss to it’s to rivals, then to beat both of them in State. Oh well, I’m a little bit of an optimist if you don’t know me. I could be down 9-0 in a game and think there was a way to win it. Don’t get me wrong, Newton’s not down by 9 right now, They’ve lost a couple tough ones, but will definately bounce back. We always had a way of winning close games and surprising teams that thought they were better than us, I don’t see that changing any time soon.

So since we have probably ruined our chances of being ranked for the next couple years by losing to 3 good teams, I don’t mind being an underdog and I can’t think of a better time to be an underdog then now. So my challenge to the current team is: take the program to somewhere that I never could, go to STATE!! It’d be the first time in Newton Girls soccer history, and don’t just stop once you get there. Anything can happen at that point. Any team can win any game and you never know how things will go. I’m going to back track a little to make it clear that this won’t be easy, but I’m hoping you can do it. Once you’ve been there, it’s something that you’ll never forget, it’s a great atmosphere, the best fields in the state, and you get treated like royalty. Staying in nice hotels, eating good food and just playing the sport you love. So don’t let the hurdles along the way get you down, there’s a lot to play for.

The team over east

Another frustrating edition of Newton soccer. I left work a couple minutes early thinking I can make the drive and get there a litte early before the 7:30 PM start… wrong! The game started at 7:00. You would think that they would have held the game up so that I could make it. I did have to drive about 170 miles on a Tuesday night, I think Pella could’ve moved their 30 mile trip a little later. So I missed the first Pella goal, but again, things just kinda looked out of wack. There were a few matchups that were off and Pella did a nice job of controlling the ball in the midfield, but didn’t really have any standouts. We had our chances, but it didn’t seem like there was a team sense of urgency. The style of play would make you think that we were up a couple goals against an average team. I think if I had the chance I would put it to either Pella or Norwalk, it’s no holds barred when you face them, along with a few past CIML rivals. I would have to say that the small field played to our advantage, which is maybe why Norwalk has always had an edge on Pella. I wish we would have played Pella on a small field last year. The other thing about playing Pella is that it just seems like we don’t quite get out of the blocks fast enough. We tend to play at a slow pace and let things come to us instead of setting the pace of play against them. I won’t even mention anything about the outcome, but it wasn’t pretty.

It really hit me this game, how much I felt for the girls. They all tried so hard and gave it everything they had. They have faced a lot this year and are reacting the best they can, but have so much on their plate. It really hit me how I kinda just left them hanging. I think that if I had stayed around atleast 1 more year, we might have been able to get through a couple of these games with better outcomes. Who knows how the games would’ve been different, and I guess I would always feel for the team right after I left. I just want them to succeed so much. I was hoping that I’d leave and they’d win all the games, not that they would’ve won all their games with me, just that it would make an easier transition.

After the game I ran down to the field and tried to give everyone a quick pat on the back. I don’t know if I got the message accross that I was hoping, but I just wanted them to know that I care and was rooting for them; to let them know that I had their back. I was glad to see that everyone was so upset, that sounds mean, but that’s when you know that people care about the team. Everyone knows of that person that was on their team at one time or another that didn’t care if the team won or lost, it was about how that individual played and I’m glad I didn’t see that. The one vibe that I felt from hearing from people afterwards was that people were blaming their individual efforts for why they lost. Soccer has always been a team sport and no 1 player or 1 play losses a game. It is good that players recognize when they didn’t do well, and are willing to put the weight on their shoulders, but not if they let it get them down. It wasn’t any 1 players fault.

It was a long drive back, 1st time I’ve ever head a long trip home after a loss for a home game. So after 350 miles of driving and 5 hours on the road, I was finally home in time to go to bed. But I would do it all over again for them.


I’m not real excited about this weather, but I’m looking forward to watching the Cardinals play some soccer tonight. I’m hoping they get the game in, it’s one of the few I’m able to make it to. Then it looks like more of the same weather tomorrow at Knoxville. From trying to figure out how things are going by reading scores. I’m thinking that the Little Hawkeye conference is once again going to be a battle. Norwalk edged out Pella in overtime the other night. It’s starting to look like last year. Only difference is Newton has to win the rest of it’s conference games including Pella.

The ratings usually go up on Thursday’s and I noticed they’ve skipped the last 2 weeks, usually they only skip one week in the begining of the year. I’ll be interested to see if much changes, it’s early and the weather hasn’t been the best for soccer. I doubt any ranked teams have bombed after only a few games.

I expect Dallas Center Grimes to be pretty tough. They have had some good teams in the past and return a couple good midfielders that are just sophomores. I think they’re well coached and they have put it to a couple teams this year. There only loss comes to Johnston, which has always been a pretty quality team. It may help a little that the game is at their place, but I don’t know much about their field. If they play in a football stadium, their won’t be much of an advantage unless one team or the other plays better in poor conditions. So it should be a great match up of ranked 1A schools early in the year. Hopefully my Cardinals can pull it out.

Newton Girls Soccer Blog

Welcome to the Official Newton Girls Soccer Blog.

Just a warning. This blog is public and the rules are that I can add or remove whatever that I feel is appropriate, no questions asked. No questions about playing time and I make the rules, so I’ll add some if necessary.

Now that that’s over with. This is intended to be a fun, open forum to get ideas out and give my updates on how the team is doing. I will try to give regular updates, if there is anything you would like added feel free to let me know.

My First Blog…

So I’m trying to get into the whole blogging thing, but things don’t just come to me when I’m sitting front of the computer. I’m actually pretty creative usually. There’s alot to this blogging stuff that I don’t understand. First of all, who would want to read my blog. I’m not sure what I have that makes me that much different than anybody else. Maybe I should tell you a little about myself first.

I have a wonderful girlfriend named Amy. She is from Omaha, NE and still goes to school at Simpson College. Which is my Alma Mater. I played football and baseball there, and currently coach football (running backs). I also coach high school girls soccer in Newton. I’ve been doing the coaching thing for 4 years now and I’ve decided it’s a field that I’ll never be able to get out of. I’ll be coaching my great-great-grand kids at the sports that are invented by the time they are playing. And I’ll still be telling stories about the 2003-2006 soccer and football teams.

I am also an IT professional currently working for the Maytag Corporation. I started here in November 2003 as a temp and then was hired full-time 2 months later. I’ve been working as an IT Customer Support Analyst and was recently promoted to a level 2 analyst. I’ve worked in many different areas, but most recently in SAP Basis & web development, but continuing first and second level support to Maytag employees. We were recently acquired by the Whrilpool Corporation and my position has been transitioned. On March 1st, I will no longer be employed by Maytag/Whrilpool.

The name oneniner has a lot of meaning to me. It sounds like a silly screen name that I made up to be unique on the millions of sites that I have signed up on, but it comes from the number 19. When my dad was growing up the number 19 was lucky to his father (my grandfather). His father died when he was young, and therefor I never got to meet my grandfather on his side. When I was starting to play sports I was talking to my dad about what numbers I should choose. I always prefered 9, but never thought of double digit numbers as lucky until I had this talk with my dad. He was telling about the meaning that the number 19 had to him, so I decided to adopt the number as my number. So all though highschool sports I was number 19. The only sport I couldn’t be 19 was basketball because in high school nobody has any digits over 5 in their numbers, but for football, soccer, and baseball I wore the number. In football I started my carreer playing quarterback so the number fit my position perfectly, then my senior year I moved to playing defensive line. I was probably the only defensive linemen in the state wearing 19. The nickname Oneniner came from baseball season. It just kinda grew on me from hearing people say “lets go one-niner”. So I decided Oneniner is now my nickname. Nobody has ever called me that, but I have used it online every since ncarson was gone from the hotmail database in 1996.