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Soccer follow story

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by RedHotChiliPrepper, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. Covered a playoff soccer game the other night. The underdog team sold playing exclusively defesne, packing in the box because there was no way they could compete with favorite team. After the game, found out the sweeper for the underdog team was playing with the muscles on each side of his groin severly pulled (insert your joke here). Didn't have time on deadline to do a sidebar, so wrote it up next day.
    Thanks for the feedback folks.

    Southern coach Jon Joseph pointed toward the dark side of Hughesville’s soccer stadium. Like the players disappearing into the corn in Field of Dreams, Tigers’ sweeper Greg Hildebrandt descended into the shadows of the stadium, darkened by the lights being turned off just minutes prior.
    With each step Hildebrandt took following Southern’s 1-0 overtime loss to Lewisburg in the District 4 Class A playoffs, he grimaced. Gingerly, Hildebrandt took step after step, taking his grand old time to make the trek to the opposite corner of the stadium where Southern fans, headed by his mother, nearly in tears, crowded around the field’s exit.
    “Anyone under the age of 95 should be able to catch up with him now,” Joseph joked. “He’s hurting pretty good.”
    It was amazing enough Hildebrandt had even gotten to the point where he needed to carry himself off the pitch on Tuesday. His senior season has been plagued by an injury no athlete wants to endure while walking, let alone playing 84 minutes of soccer.
    Hildebrandt played every second of Tuesday’s loss despite having pulled the muscles in both sides of his groin through the course of the season. The first injury kept him out for nearly half the year. And not too long after returning, he pulled the other side, sidelining him yet again.
    “I don’t know that I’m going to be able to get out of bed (Wednesday),” Hildebrandt said. “It hurts that bad.”
    Hildebrandt was right in the middle of the Tigers’ strategy to slow down Lewisburg’s explosive offense. The senior started at sweeper, the last line of a defense before reaching the goalie for nearly any high school soccer team.
    And despite the injury, Hildebrandt never left the field as Southern’s plan was to pack in its defense and take only very calculated offensive risks. The pain became so unbearable for Hildebrandt that he ended up in tears on the field in the middle of the second half.
    “I was almost crying just watching him out there,” Joseph said. “I said to him at the start of overtime, ‘Let me take you out’ because he was just sobbing. But he looked at me and said, ‘I’m not stepping off.’”
    “It hurt so bad, but you couldn’t stop me,” Hildebrandt said. “This is my last game of the season and if we somehow win we could go to states. I couldn’t give up on my team like that; I have to suck it up and play.”
    Even though Hildebrandt was suffering from a pair of pulled muscles, he could only have one preventively wrapped prior to each game he played. So he figured out which side hurt the most and would have that side wrapped. He knew that wrapping the one side would leave the other side throbbing in pain the next day.
    “This was the first full game I’ve played in a while,” Hildebrandt said. “And I love our guys to death and trust absolutely any of them in my position. But I feel better being out there myself doing what I can. And with the defensive mindset that we had, I couldn’t not be on the field.”
  2. jlee

    jlee Well-Known Member

    Loved some of the detail you got in here. Some confusing parts in there, though. Thanks for posting it.

  3. dawgpounddiehard

    dawgpounddiehard Active Member

    RHCP —

    I had the same problems that jlee had... the lede had some great description, but I tripped up with you used phrases like "Like the players disappearing into the corn in Field of Dreams" and "taking his grand old time".

    Look, using phrases like this does not make you a good writer. Noticing this scene and describing it like you did, without those phrases, does. You recognized this and then put it in your story with simple descriptions. That's good stuff.

    I love the lede quote, but my concern is how was the players demeanor when he was leaving? Was it a serious thing since the mom was in tears? Maybe the lighthearted quote, as good as it is, should go deeper in the story once we establish what type of player he is.

    Pretty good stuff though, great story to be presented with and you presented it very well.
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