While on the packed, humid bus headed to camp Miniwanca, I had one thing on my mind, the massive cabin leader versus camper soccer game. I was a 13 year old, eager middle school camper returning for my second year. As I stepped out of the blazing hot bus, and stepped into the refreshing, crisp air of Michigan I was immediately greeted by exuberant cabin leaders. I checked in was told my cabin number, cabin leader, and had my mandatory cell phone turn in and lice check. After all of this I unpacked my stuff, set up my bed, and met my cabin mates. We all then, headed up to Bryant field, a tremendous beautiful open grass lot surrounded by trees to play some World Cup (a soccer game) and get to know other campers.
After a week and a half of playing soccer nonstop and getting to know everyone as players the day finally came, we were fully prepared to take on the leaders. All day the game was being hyped up all around camp and when time game, it was game on. It was a breezy, cool evening, sun still shining but the air felt full of excitement and anticipation, before we started I quickly laced up my old, dirty, beat-up pink and black Nike soccer cleats. After we went over the rules for the game, we were finally about to begin. I quickly went over to my teammates to help assign positions, I was playing forward. When I realized that there were 40 campers but only 14 cabin leaders playing, I knew this was going to be a hard game.
The cabin leaders kicked off the game, and were already up a goal within five minutes, after a LIT blasted a shot into the right side of the goal. We were all shocked and I felt that the mood of my teammates was somber, and defeated as if we already lost the game, but I didn’t give up. Fifteen long minutes passed we started to warm up, and strung some passes together to get off three or four shots but the goalie was like a brick wall and stopped every shot we took. Then suddenly, after a hard tackle from our defender, the fastest and the best soccer players on my team was on a breakaway, but the leaders were gaining on him. Someone yelled, “Cross!!” He then served the ball of balance and it was headed right to me. The ball was coming right at me fast and at my waist, I then turned my body with my shoulders squared to the goal, I was thinking to myself make contact with the ball. I lifted my leg and volleyed the ball on with outside of my foot, it went into the left corner of the net and hit the metal with a loud bang. I scored and I couldn’t believe what I had just done, I imitated one of my favorite player’s famous goal, I was filled with joy. I was met in the middle of the soccer field with hugs in celebration from both campers and leaders, and couldn’t believe what I just done.
I had only tied the game, but the goal lifted the mood from my team and there was a sudden burst of confidence and momentum. After few shots on goal from both teams, I had another opportunity, a leader and camper both attempted to kick the ball but instead the ball went really high into the air, right outside of the opposing team’s box. I stepped up again thinking I need to make some type of contact. I got ready to kick the ball and as soon as I made contact with the ball, I knew that it was going in. The ball curved right into the middle of the goal, blowing right pass the keeper, we then had the lead. I scored two sick volleys in one game, I again celebrated with my team, and I felt both shocked and proud of myself. But the game wasn’t over, we still had more time left.
A leader immediately scored another tap-in goal to give them the tie, the game was then 2-2. I felt was if the game was ending soon, probably because the sun was setting and the brisk Michigan air was starting to affect us. But I the heat came back into my body after the cabin leaders scored off a free kick from outside of the box, I was anxious we were going to lose. We kicked off the game and the boys’ camp director, Adam yelled, “TWO MIUTES LEFT, TWO MINUTES LEFT IN THE GAME!!” It was crunch time, now or never, we sent all of the best shooters to the attacking portion of the field, and the defenders up to midfield. We won a corner kick and I was set to take it everyone was in the box, I held up my hand and proceeded to kick the ball from the corner flag. At first I thought I got under the ball too much and it was going to sail over the goal, but it curved right in front of the keeper, I watched as the ball bounced around, and around, which felt like it was bouncing around for hours. Then I heard someone kick the ball and then ball go into the net, we scored, the game ended a 3-3 draw. I was happy with the tie because of my two goals, while walking back to my cabin to go to bed, I was given many compliments and was even named MVP of the game. When I was back in my cabin and we were all lying down, I could faintly hear my cabin mates talking about the next day, but I was still excited about telling all of family and friends about the big game.