I hadn't mentioned it before, but Soccer Son is now playing professional indoor soccer. Tonight was their opening home game and the facility was packed!
Soccer Son's team is called the Sacramento Surge, and they are a brand new expansion team. Last weekend they played their first two games away against the Anaheim Bolts at the Anaheim Convention Center followed the next night by a game against the San Diego Sockers at the Valley View Casino Center.
Playing in large arenas like these was a new experience for Soccer Son. When he was a teenage soccer player, Sacramento had a professional indoor team that played at what was then Arco Arena where Kings basketball is played, and we used to go to those games whenever we could. I'm sure he could only dream then that someday he'd be playing arena soccer. There were over 3,500 fans in attendance at the San Diego game. These first two photos are from that game. (We weren't there, but I was able to pick up these photos off Soccer Son's Facebook.)
Soccer Son is the guy in the white shirt on the right.
Since the Surge is a brand new expansion team, they're still learning to play together as a team, and they aren't nearly as good as some of the other teams that have been together for several years. The Surge lost both of their first two away games but the experience of playing at that level was so exciting that not even a couple losses could dim Soccer Son's enthusiasm.
Tonight's game was played at Off the Wall, an indoor soccer facility that is essentially a large warehouse space--not quite the level of professional arena play of the first two games, but it's what the Surge can afford for now. They're hoping to move into a professional arena in the next year or so.
And while the facility isn't very large, as I mentioned, it was packed tonight for the Surge's home opener against the Las Vegas Legends. Unfortunately, the Surge lost this game too.
The night was marred by great deal of rough play, penalties, and time outs. The Surge seems to have a few hot heads on their team; hopefully, that will change over time. I'm sure that facing their third losing game in a row, many of these young men were frustrated and had a difficult time controlling their testosterone- and adrenaline-fueled tempers. Although Soccer Son is an aggressive player, he rarely plays dirty and almost always maintains a level of calm that surprises me sometimes.
Whenever the Surge had to play a man short due to a penalty, Soccer Son came out to help defend the goal, and he did a great job holding off the other team. He also scored one of the team's two goals for the night.
While I would have loved the see the Surge win their game, I can't say I was too disappointed since we were able to witness Soccer Son's first professional goal. But most of all, I was proud to see how he played the game fairly, beautifully, and with integrity. Go Surge!