PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Beach yoga, hypnosis...unconventional team building exercises and training techniques are nothing new for the Arnold boys soccer team.
Following a 2-0 regional quarterfinal victory over Gulf Breeze on Wednesday night, the Marlins prepared for a fourth meeting with rival Mosley by watching film...and decompressing at a salon.
Coach Jonathan Hammond treated his players to pedicures at Tips and Toes Nail Salon in Panama City Beach. It worked last year during the playoffs...and although the pedicures probably didn't have much to do with their first appearance in the state semifinals, it can't hurt to take care of their feet again.
"They enjoyed it so much last year, they asked for it this year," Hammond said. "It just brings everybody together. We get to laugh and cut up together. It kind of brings us together, kind of like a family you know? We look back at this time at the end of the year and laugh about it."
Arnold won the three previous matches with Mosley, 1-0 and 4-0 in November and 2-0 in the 3A District 2 championship last week. Despite past success, the Marlins know there's even less room for error this time with the season on the line.
"After you play somebody so much, you start to get to know each other and figure out each other's tendencies, what they like to do and they figure out what we like to do," Hammond added. "You give somebody a lot of chances--which they've earned--at some point, that game is going to be real close. We can just prepare, hope for the best, leave it all on the field, and whatever happens happens."
And whatever happens...the Marlins will have fresh feet.