With Wyoming high school spring sports delayed until at least the first weekend in April, the Wyoming Coaches Association announced on Friday (the originally scheduled first day of spring competition) at least two soccer games for fans to mark on their calendars.
The WCA unanimously voted in favor of adding boys’ and girls’ all-star soccer games to its pre-existing slate of volleyball and basketball games.
Gillette head boys soccer coach Chris McMackin noted in the statement released by the WCA that he retained fond memories from playing in the 1994 all-star game and asked area coaches why the games stopped. As he explained, no coaches gave him a firm answer, so he went about resurrecting the games.
“I just felt it was long overdue that the soccer players, coaches and officials be recognized for their hard work and dedication to the game,” McMackin’s stated.
WCA soccer representative Mike Sauers warmly welcomed the idea and aided in its return. Sauers, the Arvada-Clearmont activities director, is also the girls soccer coach at Buffalo.
The two games are scheduled to be played on June 27 in Gillette and will be hosted by Gillette College. Those dates were chosen so they don’t interfere with pre-existing WCA All-Star games (typically played in July) or with the Wyoming Shrine Bowl, which is scheduled for June 13 at Natrona County’s Cheney Alumni Field.
“The all-star soccer game are intended to recognize and honor outstanding graduating athletes who, throughout their high school athletic careers have demonstrated exceptional sportsmanlike attitudes as well as have quality character, integrity, and display good citizenship,” the WCA’s statement read. “The student/athlete selection is by invitation and at the complete discretion of the Wyoming Coaches Foundation Executive Board and the All-Star Soccer selection committee that is made up of 3A and 4A soccer coaches.”
The high school soccer season remains in suspension until at least April 6 by the Wyoming High School Activities Association in accordance with the state health department’s recommendation. On Thursday the WHSAA Board of Directors held a conference call about possible alternatives for the spring season, if there are any, although commissioner Ron Laird assured the Star-Tribune no contingency plans were made.
Currently, the state soccer tournament is scheduled for May 21-23 in Cheyenne.
Follow sports reporter Brady Oltmans on Twitter @BradyOltmans
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