Friday Wrap #51 – Win, lose, or draw

It’s been a while since I wrote a Friday Wrap. Life gets busy. Some of that busyness ended Wednesday as the Futsal program I’m involved with concluded its season. It was the first year the club offered a Futsal League (indoor 5v5 soccer on a basketball court) and it was a success. The program started with a drop-in pilot the winter before and grew from five youth per week to 25. This year, two leagues were launched along with a youth program for U9s – 84 youth players registered. So in two years we went from zero youth playing Futsal, to 25, to 84. That is a win in my books.

It wasn’t all roses though. I coached three teams, one of the two U9s, a U12, and a U15. From the start of the season to the end, you could see the players growing more confident in the sport. I won’t lie with some tripe “wins don’t matter” or “the score doesn’t matter.” Yes, wins matter. Yes, the score matters. But what weight do you put on those wins and losses? Some, but not all. Wednesday, the U12 team I coached lost in the league finals. Worse yet, oldest son coached the team that beat us. That is a loss. Everyone felt it. It sucks. Thursday was a new day though. The U15 team I coached did win their championship. Where the biggest loss for me was that a few of the youth that registered quit with no explanation. I tried to get in contact with the families to see what happened, if there was an issue. Nothing. That to me is a loss that hits harder than losing a championship final. Did they quit because of something that happened? Or did they lose interest? That I won’t know, at least right now.

Sometimes I draw conclusions about these things prematurely. I should just count the wins and balance them against the losses. There is an old farmer’s saying that if you end the year with a dollar more in your pocket than you started, it was a good year. Maybe I should draw the conclusion that ending a season with more wins than losses is the same. When I say wins, I don’t mean just games. I mean the eight year old who went from awkwardly kicking the ball at the start of the season to scoring their first goal; a 13 year old new to the sport picking up a pair of goalie gloves and trying something new, only to win a championship; or a 10 year old figuring out how to re-centre themselves after making an error, instead of giving up. Win, Win, Win.

Two months off, until we go back to outdoor soccer… can’t wait.