Soccer fields alive with games as fall season kicks into high gear

Sep 28, 2019

It’s fall in Dartmouth, and that means soccer is back. 

Every Saturday, the soccer fields at the high school spring to life with nearly a dozen simultaneous games each morning until mid-afternoon. 

It’s all part of Dartmouth Youth Soccer Association’s fall soccer league. Hundreds of athletes as young as four years old are in the program to learn the basics of the sport, and have fun. 

On September 28, towards the tail end of game day, the Blue Panthers and Shark Medusa Spongebobs took the field. Teams are officially given numbers, but the kids come up with their own team names. 

In the younger age divisions — in this case the U6 division — coaches are focused on teaching the fundamentals of the sport, and building up players’ confidence and basic skills. 

“We focus on developing their dribbling and passing,” noted Blue Panthers coach Darren Fleurent. “It’s about getting out there and having fun.” 

Team Unicorns, a U6 girls team, also played on Saturday. Although the team won, winning is not the focus of the fall instructional program — skill development and having fun is. 

For Unicorns teammate Samantha Lauzon, 5, that takes the form of her favorite technique: Kicking the ball into the net. 

“It’s hard because there’s so many kids trying to take the ball,” Lauzon said. “I keep my eyes on the ball and I run really fast.” 

She is getting better though — she has scored several goals during the season.