THS Soccer Camp

Oklahoma State University assistant coach Justin Elkington gives instruction to Skylar Marlow (left), Sarah May (right) and the rest of the Lady Tigers squad. Elkington and OSU head coach Colin Carmichael are conducting a team camp at Tahlequah through Thursday.

The Tahlequah girls’ soccer team is getting a chance to experience something few other teams do this week.

Seventeen girls got a chance to participate in a team camp with the coaches of one of the best programs in the region.

“This is something that the kids coming up have to look forward to,” said Lady Tigers coach Greg Hall.

Oklahoma State head soccer coach Colin Carmichael and assistant coach Justin Elkington are in town conducting a four-day camp with the Lady Tigers. Carmichael, a native of Scotland, has been the head coach for five seasons. He helped lead the Cowgirls to an 18-1-4 record and a Big 12 Championship last season.

Elkington was recently named as the new OSU assistant coach. He was formerly the head coach of the Broken Arrow Soccer Club.

“We don’t do a lot of satellite camps where we go into the towns,” said Carmichael. “But Greg [Hall] contacted us and the schedules matched up so it worked out.”

One of Carmichael’s main goals for the camp is not to try to turn them into immediate state champions, but rather to give them a core group of instructions that they will remember and take with them.

“If we can give them three or four things that they can improve on and if Greg can leave with three of four things he can teach, then it’s a success,” said Carmichael.

One of the first thing that Carmichael and Elkington did was to try to get a good understanding of the Lady Tigers talent level and areas that needed improvement.

“Coming in, we were aware what the level of play was going to be,” said Carmichael.

On the first day of the camp, Carmichael, who played college soccer at South Alabama, conducted a session where he talked about some of the aspects of playing at the next level.

He also talked to the girls about the improvements he had made at OSU in his five seasons.

“He [Carmichael] conducted a classroom session where he was telling the girls what it was like to be a college player and how he gradually built OSU up to where they were the Big 12 champions,” said Hall.

Through the first two days, Hall has noticed improvement especially in the level of communication between the girls on the field.

“Their communication on the field has been better,” said Hall.

The camp, which began on Monday, runs through Thursday.

Hall hopes it will become an ongoing tradition at Tahlequah.

“This is something we are thing about having as an annual summer event,” said Hall.

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