Every year, our game against Solon has always been intense and even brutal. While I can't speak for the other team, I know our players look forward to this game each season as one of our toughest games, and consequently, most heated. With their fans getting a hold of our roster, we ignore the taunting from their home bleachers in order to focus on the blood bath soaking up the turf. Okay, so it might not actually be that dramatic. But I will always remember this game in a battle-like haze.
Similarly, I can't recall the order in which these following events occurred, but simply remember an array of chaos that erupted sporadically throughout those 80 minutes.
I remember a referee blowing his whistle for himself, as he crumbles to the ground with a Charlie Horse. Stop of play.
I remember watching my teammate on the brink of a fight with a Solon midfielder, a shove in the back while the ball is overhead. Stop of play.
I remember, in the lull between a ball out of bounds and a corner kick, the pulling of my teammate's ponytail-- New Mexico style-- if any of you remember that YouTube video. Stop of play.
And I remember my sweeper on the ground, afraid to look at her black and blue ankle. I remember Stan, our coach, storming the field, yelling into the tired ref's face. I don't remember what he said, but saw the red card wave up high like a flag in the air, and Stan surrendered. Parents yelled at other parents and cops showed up to show us to our cars. We finished off the game, and left.
When I'm old, I'll remember our crazy coach sticking up for us in a game teetering on the edge of a new version of Gladiator. I can't say that we were entirely the victims, but by losing control himself, Stan gave us back a shred of control on the field. At school the next day, when I got hoarse from telling this same story to whoever would hear it, I could only describe the infamous Solon game with one phrase: High Class Drama.