Nearly 200 Teams Compete In Owasso Soccer Tournament
OWASSO, Oklahoma - Nine-year-old Matthew Reynolds has been playing soccer for two-thirds of his life, and he's got a strategy for winning.
“[I] look at other players to make a pass, or maybe call out to them, try to helpfully motivate them," explained Reynolds.
Reynolds is part of the Galaxy team from Tulsa, one of 175 teams competing in the Owasso Soccer Club Small-Sided Tournament.
"Just have fun playing, but it would be better to win," said Reynolds.
With hundreds of soccer players out at the Owasso Sports Complex, something everyone is looking out for is staying safe.
"Safety first," stated Indoor Soccer and Sports Coach Carmelo Scalone.
One player sprained an ankle and went to the hospital but other injuries, like concussions, are on everyone's mind too.
In June, Governor Mary Fallin signed a bill into law making it mandatory for coaches and referees to receive concussion training.
Owasso Soccer Club Tournament Director Robert Allen says this will impact how the game is played.
"You're gonna see players duck out of the way, you're gonna see things wait until they come in and maybe get a better control on their body's side of it, so it's gonna change the game,” Allen explained. “It's gonna be different for some of those coaches that have been coaching for quite some time."
As for Reynolds and his teammates, there are a few things they do before stepping on the field to help them play safely.
"We stretch sometimes, we just try to hone our skills before the game, so we're all rested," said Reynolds.
The law takes effect November first of this year.
Some of the tournament's registration money will be donated to Owasso Community Resources.