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Soccer camp wraps up

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POSTED: July 11, 2014 10:06 a.m.
Patty Leon/

After four days of intense training, soccer campers posed for a group shot along with Atlanta Calcio Academy Director Gavino Asteghene, former pro player Matthias Faublas, Assistant Director David Sexton and Hinesville Gator coach Tom Sukaratana.

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Everyone was sporting new camp shirts Thursday morning as Atlanta Calcio Academy wrapped up its four-day elite soccer training at James Brown Park.
Camp director Gavin Astegehene said he was impressed with the youths’ talent and will come back next year.
“Coach Tom (Sukaratana) did great in getting kids registered … it was such a big turnout,” Asteghene said, noting it was nearly twice the number of attendees of last year’s inaugural camp.
The longtime coach and Team Italy scout said he plans to schedule next year’s camp for the week after the Fourth of July, just like this camp. He said the weather was great, and the timing meant families would be back from their Independence Day vacations.
The camp was sponsored by the Hinesville Soccer Association.
Hinesville Gators coach Tom Sukaratana watched from the sidelines as Asteghene and his team of professionals guided many current Gators through specialized drills.
Soon, Sukaratana joined the instructors in assisting campers with their techniques. Former Team Italy player Matthias Faublas encouraged the participants to keep pushing and moving their feet.
“Practice makes perfect,” he said to the campers. “You can’t just do things once. You have to do it over and over and over to get better.”
Among the campers were Sukaratana’s son, Clark, who is preparing to play soccer at Point University, and Brooke Standard, who will play at Armstrong State University. Sukaratana worked with the older campers, several of whom will play for First Presbyterian Christian Academy next season.
Clark Sukaratana said he reports to Point on July 31.
Asteghene thanked the campers and said he will keep an eye on the up-and-coming talent. Each year, Asteghene takes several talented players on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Italy. He said there are a few younger Hinesville players who have the potential to make the selection and learn European-style soccer in Florence, Italy. The selected players will train at the Italian professional complex, experience a live game and tour the country during their weeklong stay.
The first step in making the selection, however, is showing hard work and dedication to the sport. Asteghene and his team will tour Liberty County today before heading to their next camp location. But the director said Hinesville is a wonderful place to visit and that he can’t wait to come back next year.


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