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Fair Grove Soccer Academy 2018

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Fair Grove Soccer Academy 2018

Harley Maxwell

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The Fair Grove Soccer Academy has been going on for quite some time now. The Park Board started the academy and had been running it for at least a few years before Joseph Florez (Head High School Soccer Coach) came to Fair Grove in 2012. Logan Hoffman was running the program 8 years ago, when Florez arrived. He was connected with Drury University’s Men’s Soccer team, and the program was mostly run by Drury soccer players. Many of the kids who have played high school ball at Fair Grove the last few years actually started at the Academy (including Kyle and Kamron Stacy, seniors for this years High School Boys Soccer program).

Florez staffs the practices and games, creates the schedules and rosters, recruits coaches, runs the communication, and basically does all of the paperwork related stuff. He used to be at more of the Academy events, but it was just becoming impossible with his responsibilities as the High School Head Coach for boys soccer in the Fall and girls soccer in the Spring. “I work hand-in-hand with Bob Florez, who is our on site person when it comes to the Academy. Bob is at every event, running practices and refereeing games. He also trains our current high school players to coach and referee, so the kids get the best experience possible,” said Florez.

Most years the Academy offers its program to preschool through 5th grade students. This year the Academy also offered 6th and 7th grades to join, as well as a lot of middle schoolers who were very interested in getting a head start for High School Soccer.  The High School Boys and Girls Soccer teams are the ones who run the practices for the kids. It helps to fund raise some money for their program, and also helps to prepare for the future of Fair Grove High School Soccer. “The Academy focuses on fundamentals. It is very recreational, and many of our kids develop at the Academy and then move on to club soccer in Springfield that is more competitive when they are ready. Many of our current players played for the Academy since I’ve taken it over, including Jacob Morelan, Tyler Padgett, Dalton Roberts, and others,” said Florez.  The practices for the students are Monday nights for about 8 weeks, and games are for about 6 weeks on Saturday mornings and afternoons.

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