Soccer camp held for advanced players at Centennial Field

Published 5:43 pm Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Soccer players from Decatur and Miller counties hustled up and down the field yesterday at Vinny Gill’s Soccer Camp, practicing getting the ball to a “target player.”

Kids of all ages were split into teams and focused on winning the ball and kicking it to a specific area, a concept lots of younger players have yet to learn.

“If you win the ball, rather than just kick the ball away, we are going to define areas where we want you to put the ball,” Gill said. “The first thing we are looking to do is we have target players up top, and you hit the target quickly.”

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The exercise plays into a bigger idea that Gill is training Bainbridge soccer players to apply. Instead of playing soccer in just a small area, play it with the entire field. When a teammate gets the ball, know where it needs to go and how to get it there.

Gill is the women’s soccer coach at Middle Georgia College, where he sports a 110-78-14 record. The drills he runs through with his college players are the same ones Bainbridge players will be running through the rest of the week.

“With my team, this is what we do,” Gill said. “We sit back and let teams come at us, and when they bring in too many players, we score. I used to tell a girl last year to just be patient, eventually they will bring too many players forward and we will hit them when we can. She scored 22 goals that season.”

Every evening this week, Gill will be teaching new ideas and concepts to the players, giving them new tactics to use when their regular seasons start.

“I do better when I can teach kids tactics,” Gill said. “That’s probably the difference between me and a lot of coaches. There are guys here who are good players, and I’m trying to give them concepts.”