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AUM coach teaches YMCA youth the basics of soccer

Soccer had never been a big sport in the state, but it is catching on quickly in the northern end and heading further south.

The Greenville YMCA was host to a three-day soccer clinic for youth ranging in age from 8 to 13 years old. Assisting in the clinic were members of the Auburn University Montgomery coaching staff which has helped lead the Senators to the national NAIA soccer tournament each year for the last five seasons.

Sigurdur "Siggy" Sighvatsson is in his first year as a graduate assistant coach at AUM after playing two years for the Senators. Sighvatsson shared pointers to the group of 12 campers from the basics of footwork to scoring goals during the final day of the camp on Wednesday.

"When they are so young, it is important to teach them the fundamentals," he said. "Passing and receiving the ball has to be the most important aspect of the game that we, as coaches, can pass on to such a young group."

Sighvatsson said that he has been surprised by the amount of interest that soccer has just within the state.

"I know it is big in the northern part of the state, but it is really coming on strong further south into places like Montgomery," he said.

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The graduate assistant said even if soccer doesn't catch on in places like Greenville the camp will get the younger players ready for other team sports.

"Soccer is a team sport," he said. "You must work as one in order to win. That's the way it is in soccer and other team sports. So they do learn teamwork on top of the basic fundamentals."