The Panama City Beach Sports Complex trades their diamonds for rectangles for the first soccer event of the summer

Published: Jul. 31, 2020 at 6:24 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG) -The Panama City Beach Sports Complex has spent most of the summer hosting baseball, softball, and a sprinkle of rugby, but this week, the diamonds turned into rectangles and Soccer Youth started up for the week with players elementary to high school from all over the country participating in an event different than your everyday tournament with players coming individually to be placed on teams.

“Normal soccer tournaments, you’d bring teams in. That’s not what we do. That’s a different aspect of it. It’s almost like an individual showcase, so these players get to show what talent they have already built up. Then, they try to come together as a team and see what they can do together. Obviously it’s an individual showcase, but to be a good individual player, you have to be a good team player also. That’s what we try to build here,” said tournament director, Max Hammond.

Hammond says this gives players the chance to compete against one another on a different level.

“There’s a couple different aspects of growth there. You see that little bit of social growth. They may not know this kid, but they get to be buddies with them now. They learn how to play together, especially by the last day. They get three or four pool play games, and on that tournament day, they get to come together and see what they can do as a team. It’s a really good bonding experience for them. It’s a really good personal growth standpoint because they may be the top dog at there club, but what’s going to happen when they come to an event like this? They may not be. They have to learn how to adjust, and learn how to be an effective player for their team,” said Hammond.

25 teams have been created, and championship games will be held on Sunday.

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