Chastain soccer camp visits Carson City |

Chastain soccer camp visits Carson City

By Charles Whisnand

Appeal Sports Editor

Brandi Chastain admits to being selfish when it comes to the Chastain Soccer Academy.

“This is really for me,” said the world famous soccer star, who helped the United State’s Women’s Soccer team win two Olympic gold medals and two World Championships during her career. “I remember camp being the best thing I’ve ever done as a kid.”

Chastain, along with her brother, Chad Chastain, an accomplished player and coach in his own right, are giving young soccer players in Carson City the chance that Brandi had as they are conducting their own soccer camp at Edmonds Park this week.

The camp began on Monday and is continuing Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9 a.m.-noon each day. About 80 boys and girls are participating in the camp.

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Chastain said that’s an excellent number considering that she and her brother put together the camp in the last two months. She also noted families make summer plans well in advance, so she’s happy with the high number of participants considering the short notice.

Last week, Chastain conducted a camp in Reno and said she was pleased with how it turned out. “It was outstanding,” she said.

She said the plan is for the camps in the area to be an annual event. She also said with more time to plan, she expects the number of participants to grow each year.

As part of the camp, Brandi was also hoping to have a seminar for parents, teaching them how to be a better support system for their children who play soccer. While it didn’t work out this year, Brandi said she plans to do parent seminars in the future.

And the camps have given the Chastains a chance to spend more time with family in the area, including their grandparents, Roger and Hazel Chastain, who live in Carson City. Brandi said because of her own business interests and having a family of her own, she doesn’t have the chance to spend as much time with her family in this area as she would like.

“It’s wonderful,” said Chastain about the time she’s spent with family in the area. “It’s perfect. It’s been terrific.”

Chastain admitted that she wants the camps to be a successful business enterprise. While the camps are designed to help young players realize as much success in soccer as they possibly can, Brandi said there’s other purposes for the camps.

She said the camps are designed to teach attributes such as leadership and communication. She also said the goal is to teach the players “they’re pretty powerful people and they can do things for themselves.”

There are several college players who are helping to conduct the camp, including the University of Nevada’s Jessica Wilcox, who plays on a club team with Chastain.

Chastain said it’s becoming more difficult to play competitively with her business interests and her family. But she said she’ll keep playing competitively “until someone doesn’t choose me for their league.”

She’s still holding out hope she can rejoin the U.S. national team and even play in the 2008 Olympics, although she admitted “that’s a far-fetched idea. It’s not likely or probable. You never say no.”

She wouldn’t even rule out the 2012 Olympics, but for now is looking to play professionally in 2008, with the planned restoration of a women’s pro league. “That’s more likely than anything,” she said.