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WJBD - Local Sports - Wildcat Soccer Holds Practice Game

Two Wildcats battle for the ball during the practice game Saturday at Salem FCC.

Rowe instructs a player before a substitution is made.

New Salem Soccer Coach Cecil Rowe goes through the pregame plan with the 2013 Wildcats.

Wildcat Soccer Holds Practice Game

There is a new coach for the Salem Community High School

boys' soccer team. And Cecil Rowe is bringing with him a new mentality for the

Wildcats.

Salem held a kickoff practice game Saturday

afternoon at First Christian Church. It allowed for Rowe to evaluate the talent

of the nineteen student-athletes who comprise the 2013 squad.

Rowe says there are a few areas where the Wildcats can improve.

"These guys need to communicate more. They lack communication and keep

closing the field down when they need to open the field to spread the ball

out."

Rowe is confident that improvements can be made leading up to the first game of

the season.

"Most of them are quick learners and by the time we get our first game in,

I'm pretty sure they should be able to do something."

The first game of the season is Tuesday,

August 27 when the Wildcats host Christ Our Rock.

Rowe says he wants to teach the team about the game he loves, and is putting

education above winning games.

"I'm not looking for winning, but I'm making sure that they get to develop

and know exactly what soccer is all about. I don't want to look just for

winning right now because when you focus on winning, you tend to put pressure

on the players."

Rowe, a native of Sierra Leone in West Africa, has played and coached soccer in

Africa, Europe, and the United States. He helped start the mens' soccer program

at Kaskaskia College in 2009.

As for the practice game, the lone goal was scored by senior Zack Schilling in

the 33rd minute.

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