Home Local Sports ‘Familiar faces’: RSHS wraps 22nd annual soccer camp

‘Familiar faces’: RSHS wraps 22nd annual soccer camp

Campers in the 8-9-year-old group scrimmage during Thursday's final day of camp. (Kyle Pillar, sports editor)

ROCKINGHAM — Another successful summer camp is in the books for the Richmond Senior High School soccer program.

In its 22nd year, the Richmond soccer camp hosted 105 campers this past week. 

The four-day camp was held at the high school and head coach Chris Larsen and assistant coach Bennie Howard served as co-directors.

Aimed at continuing to grow the sport’s interest and development in Richmond County, the camp gave local youngsters the opportunity to fine-tune their skills and have fun, according to Larsen.

The camp was broken into four different age groups and each group worked on skills appropriate for its playing level.

Former Richmond soccer player Caroline Whitley and senior soccer player Ayden Mabe worked with the 5-7-year-olds, while recent graduate Kaitlyn Huff and assistant coach Michelle Denson helped with the 8-9-year-olds.

The other two groups, broken in half from ages 10-12 and 13-15, got instruction from college coaches Thomas Keen (Limestone), Stephanie Kot and Jesus Sonora (both St. Andrews).

“This year we had a decent turnout, and I’m really pleased to have over 100 campers again,” Larsen said. “The biggest thing, like every year, is that there are a lot of familiar faces returning and we love to see that. 

“It’s great to see so many kids continuing to build their development as they get older, and it’s good that their interest in the sport and getting better is still there.”

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During the first three days of camp, each group learned the proper way to stretch, connect passes and improve on the fundamentals of the game. 

Campers were also tasked with learning the ins and outs of attacking, defensive and control and possession phases.

Thursday saw a lot of smiles as coaches and campers alike competed in a series of small-sided games to incorporate everything they learned throughout the week.

“I’m glad the community has and continues to support what we’re doing as a program,” Larsen said. 

“My goal is to get a group of kids to commit to play more regularly and strengthen Richmond soccer now and in the future. It’s just a matter of getting a team started.”

Richmond will begin workouts for the upcoming boys’ soccer season on July 19 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the high school.

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Kyle Pillar is a nine-time North Carolina Press Association award-winning sports editor with The Richmond Observer. Follow the sports department on Twitter @ROSports_ for the best in-depth coverage of Richmond County sports.