Summer soccer skills program

Preseason opportunities enhance girls soccer team


Layla Mickelson

During the summer, there are many opportunities that are available to high school students. One that is offered to all aspiring female soccer students is the soccer skills program run by head coach Anne Beaton. For the past two years, she has run this skills program during the summer that teaches soccer athletes new tips and tricks to improve for their fall season. 

Beaton said the program helps athletes create confidence and learn new techniques.

“The skills program creates easy access to learning about new soccer skills and really becoming more confident coming into the fall for tryouts,” Beaton said. “We work on a different type of skill every week. We do dribbling, shooting, passing and all the different soccer skills — just sort of rotate through them throughout the summer.”

Junior soccer captain Vesna Dennison said it’s a great place to meet new people and get an early start to the season. 

“It’s a really beneficial program during the summer,” Dennison said. “You get a chance to meet new people, practice new skills over the summer and be with the coaches and kind of get a good head start going into try-outs.”

According to Beaton, she wants to increase the standards for the girls’ soccer team.

“I really want to raise the level for Park high school soccer, and I know that the level gets raised when kids get more confident with their skills,” Beaton said. “When kids come into the season more confident with their skills we’re able to take more risks, which is what you need to be able to do in order to win.”

Dennison said the program can be notably helpful for girls that don’t play club soccer.

“Doing skills is super beneficial, especially for girls who don’t play club soccer,” Dennison said. “During the offseason it’s a good way to get fit again, do new skills, get the touches on the ball and be ready to go for the season.” 

According to Sophomore Amelia Beach, the program plays an essential role in having a good season. 

“The skills program is crucial for us to have a good season,” Beach said. “It’s a great start to the season, even if the actual season hasn’t officially started.” 

Dennison said this program is going to help the team get the results and wins they want.

“Last year we had a good season,” Dennison said. “We just always didn’t get the result we wanted, and the skills program will help us move forward this year.”

Beaton said the program can increase the community and allow the athletes to feel involved and ready. 

“It grows the program and I really want to have more people come out because it’s important for kids to be involved — it makes school more fun,” Beaton said. “Then it grows our program and we become a stronger program to compete against other schools.”

Beach said the program can help teammates get to know each other more and get a better understanding of expectations. 

“It will help us get to know each other a lot better and just understand the game more,” Beach said.

According to Beaton, she’s excited  to watch the team come together and improve. 

“I’m really excited to watch the growth and foundation they’ve laid for the past two years. I really want to see what level the kids show up with this summer, and now the kids know the routine and how this works,” Beaton said. “I’m really excited to watch them take off and get even better, which will lead to a strong fall.”

This skills program is starting on June 13 and ends July 27. It is available to all female soccer athletes from grades 7–12. Any level of experience is welcome.