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ELKO – The current Northern Nevada Youth Soccer Association fall season is underway with teams playing in Elko and Spring Creek after an eventful summer for coaches and players.

The SC travel team went on the road to Colorado in July, where the 10U, 12U and 15U girls’ teams competed.

Additionally, Leaf Knotts, NNYSA Director of Coaching received his USSF National “C” Coaches License.

Travel teams The SC United travel teams competed in Steamboat Springs, Colorado July 17-21.

The 10U girls took second place; 12U girls took third place, and the 15U girls took second place in overtime.

About 43 players were joined on the trip by their parents and grandparents, said Michelle Cromwell, league commissioner and director of travel.

“They made a vacation out of it,” Cromwell said.

The highlight of the trip was when an unexpected spectator disrupted play.

“They even had a moose run through the fields as they were playing,” she said.

Knotts earns license “NNYSA is committed to helping develop our coaches in recreational soccer and travel/competitive soccer,” said Rusty Bahr, Vice President of NNYSA Youth Soccer. “We will continue to offer coaches training opportunities and leadership to be able to give the kids of our county the best shot at success in soccer.”

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Knotts explained the “C” License course for coaches is “very challenging and intense.” The course includes multiple assignments, classroom lectures and on-field practicum.

“I was able to dive deeper into the U.S. Soccer Coaching Education Philosophy, which includes reality based learning, experiential learning, and a holistic approach. The culture of player-centered learning was strongly emphasized throughout the course,” Knotts said.

The training also gave Knotts the tools “to become a more diverse coach.”

“The methodology taught was focused on creating problems or difficulties for the focus group in our training session,” he said. “Once the problem was created, our focus group worked on problem solving through experiential learning with the assistance of the coach through guided questions.”

The license is another step towards coaching soccer at a higher level, including college and semi-pro, and in earning a USSF “B” License, which is Knotts’ ultimate goal.

“Having this license is a stepping stone for me. The journey in getting to that level will be a patient one,” Knotts said. “In the meantime, I want to take what I have learned and use it in our community to better educate our coaches and players.”

Knotts is also encouraging other NNYSA coaches to gain a better comprehension of the game.

“As Director of Coaching, I have been asking our coaches to take the Grassroots Online Courses to further enhance their knowledge and understanding of soccer,” Knotts said.

In August, the NNYSA hosted the Challenger Soccer Sports Camp that featured coaches from Ireland, Bulgaria and Brazil.

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