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Youth sports: Sabers take to the soccer field

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- Members of the Sabers (green) and Galaxy (purple) race after the soccer ball during a youth soccer game on Spangdahlem’s soccer fields Sept. 26. The youth soccer season started Aug. 24. and runs until Oct. 24. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Nathanael Callon)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- Members of the Sabers (green) and Galaxy (purple) race after the soccer ball during a youth soccer game on Spangdahlem’s soccer fields Sept. 26. The youth soccer season started Aug. 24. and runs until Oct. 24. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Nathanael Callon)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- Saber Alex Harris, daughter of Master Sgt. Lance Harris, 52nd Logistics Readiness Squadron, stops the ball in the second half of the game against the Galaxy on Spangdahlem’s soccer fields Sept. 26. The youth soccer league teaches the fundamentals of soccer and emphasizes good sportsmanship and teamwork. The youth soccer season started Aug. 24. and runs until Oct. 24. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Nathanael Callon)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- Saber Alex Harris, daughter of Master Sgt. Lance Harris, 52nd Logistics Readiness Squadron, stops the ball in the second half of the game against the Galaxy on Spangdahlem’s soccer fields Sept. 26. The youth soccer league teaches the fundamentals of soccer and emphasizes good sportsmanship and teamwork. The youth soccer season started Aug. 24. and runs until Oct. 24. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Nathanael Callon)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany -- Few things are more exciting to children on the soccer field than hearing the roar of fans on the sidelines cheering them on. Sabers have the opportunity to cheer on the youth soccer here until Oct. 24. 

With some playing for the first time and others with more experience, seven teams gather Tuesdays and Thursdays or Mondays and Wednesdays with to prepare for their games held Saturdays. 

The games have 10-minute quarters with six children per team on the field - three forwards, two defenders and one goalie. 

"It's been an exciting soccer season so far," said Gators Head Coach Maj. Seth Briggs, whose 7-year-old son, Benjamin, plays on the team. 

Coach Briggs had only been at Spangdahlem three months before he began coaching. 

"I wanted to get involved and this allows me to be involved with my children as well as the base," he said. 

Coach Briggs motivates his team every practice and game by having everyone put their hands on top of the other in a huddle and yell, "Go Gators!" Hands fly up at the same time. 

Everyone is invited to come out and support the players and their families for the three remaining games held at 9 a.m. Oct. 3 and Oct. 17 and at 10 a.m. Oct. 24 on either the Bitburg or Spangdahlem soccer field. 

The youth sports program is always looking for people to volunteer to coach a sport, and being athletic or familiar with a particular sport isn't a requirement. 

"Please do not let the fact that you have never played a sport stop you from volunteering with our young Sabers," Marjorie Egger, youth sports director, said. "We will get you certified. The soccer program, as well as other sports programs, are volunteered based and relies on 100 percent of your support in order to afford every child the opportunity to participate in sports." 

"I know our parents, and children appreciate those who volunteer giving their valuable time." she added.