Despite struggles with the COVID-19 restrictions, area soccer players are getting back on the field.
President of Minor Soccer, Scott Duggan, says with all the sports options in the valley, it can make it tough to get numbers, but he says the interest is there.
“Fortunately for us, there seems to be growing support. At least there was before COVID. We had quite a banner year for the outdoor season before COVID. We had almost 150 kids out,” he said. “It has waned a bit because of COVID, the restrictions were rather harsh for some youth sports more than others.”
Last week practice began at the Drumheller Soccer Fields. Duggan says they are doing low-intensity, non-contact practice, with a maximum of eight players, and two coaches, as per the guidelines.
“Our coaches are doing everything to accommodate as many kids as we can, running multiple practices on multiple days,” he said.
One of the issues is Alberta Soccer has mandated there can be no spectators on the field. Because of this, it is difficult to coach the younger players without parents present.
“We made the best choice, saying it was going to be easier not to run our grassroots, parent-tot program this year,” he said.
They have players as young as five, up to 14 years of age, on the field.
To keep interest up, he says coaches are planning to do some summer drop-in clinics, and other activities to keep the kids playing.
Families that are interested in soccer, can contact the association through the Drumheller Minor Soccer Club Facebook page, or by calling Duggan at 403-321-0951.