The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Sports

November 19, 2012

For kicks!

Geneva soccer players compete in Scotland, soak up culture

GENEVA — Four Geneva High School soccer players took a trip across the pond this summer and although their dream trip to Scotland was technically for kicks as they competed at the prestigious Loch Lomond International Youth Soccer Festival, the boys also soaked up the culture and turned the trip into a multifaceted learning experience.

 Josh Swanson, twins Chad and Ryan Weisbarth and Tyler Hunt, all juniors at GHS and members of the Claymores Club Soccer Team joined a contingent of 17 boys and two girls on the competitive, cultural and culinary odyssey.

For the Claymores team members, the Scotland trip represented a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, which for most, included an array of first experiences. Some team members boarded an airplane for the first time and most collected stamps on their first passport. Most

also had their first taste of traditional Scottish cuisine.

“While we were there, we were told to try haggis,” Chad Wiesbarth said. “I was first to try it. It was actually very good.”

Haggis is Scotland’s best-known regional dish and is a sort of pudding containing sheep’s heart and liver mixed with onion, oatmeal and spices and served in a sausage casing. Haggis is traditionally served with “neeps and tatties” (turnips and potatoes).

“Their chocolate is the way to go,” Josh Swanson said. “They use real sugar, not corn syrup.

 “We visited castles in Sterling and Edinburgh. I was amazed by the construction of them since they were built of stone so long ago. Inside the castles, there was amazing woodwork, dating back to the 1500s. They have preserved their history well, and the castles tell the story with all of the memorabilia — everything from swords and armor to sculptures, paintings and hand woven tapestries dating back to the 1400s.”

The action on the field was memorable, too.

“The competition was fierce in our tournament games,” Swanson said. “They really take soccer seriously over there. We played Celtics boys club for our first match. It was a 2-1 victory!! The rest of our matches, we lost, but the scores were very close. We took pride in the fact that we were competitive. We will never forget the day that we beat Celtics Boys Club, as they are one of the best. It was the experience of a lifetime!”  

 The experience of a lifetime also came with a price tag which required a series of fundraisers to make the trip a reality.

“We started raising money for the trip in October of 2009,” the twins mom, Denise Weisbarth, who organized the fundraising efforts, said. “The kids hosted a spaghetti dinner, raffled off an iPad 2 and and iPOD Touch and sold everything from Christmas wreaths to chocolates to defray the costs of the trip.”

“Our coach, Mr. Duncan, is from Scotland and I hope that we made him proud,” Swanson said. “I hope he understands how much this trip meant to all of us players. We want to say, ‘Thanks, Coach!’ and thanks to all of the parents, relatives and friends who supported all of our fundraising so that we could go.

“And thanks to our sponsors, we looked professional in all of our new gear.”

Josh is the son of Mike and Elsie Swanson.

Tyler is the son of Brad and Julie Hunt and the twins are the sons of Ken and Denise Weisbarth.

Perala is a freelance writer from Geneva.

Click here to subscribe to The Star Beacon print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Star Beacon replica edition.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • SB1 Let’s play another

    It pays to have the right hitters at the plate at the right time.

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Outlaws roll again

    They may be Outlaws by name, but the Northeast Ohio-based Ohio Outlaws Gold are certainly running with the in crowd at the USA-ASA 16-and-under Nationals in Salem, Va.

    July 30, 2014

  • Don A Don McCormack column: Bearcat Gavorski on the mend

    Paying another visit to the variety store...

    On the mend
    Arguably the most decorated soccer player to every come out of the Star Beacon coverage area is down — temporarily — but anything but out.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tribe Not quite enough

    Although the Indians are still very much mathematically alive in the race for a postseason berth, they continue not to look like a playoff team. And when they have put a run together, they haven’t been able to maintain the habit of playing winning baseball.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Outlaws win opener

    The Ohio Outlaws Gold did not start well at the USA-ASA 16-and-under Nationals in Salem, Va. on Monday, but they sure did finish their opening encounter with a flourish.

    July 28, 2014

  • Racing remains at the fore

    Raceway 7’s Crate Late Models had an unsanctioned $1000 to win 25-lap feature with Kyle Zimmerman picking up the lion’s share of the glory after leading the entire distance for his first win of 2014.

    July 28, 2014

  • Coming attractions

    While it seems only yesterday school was letting out and summer vacation was starting, the time for respite will have the curtain drop for area high school football players this week.

    July 28, 2014

  • AREA HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL SCRIMMAGES:

    TUESDAY, AUG. 12

    • Lake Catholic at Perry (10)

    July 28, 2014

  • Lexi Outlaws gunning for national title in Virginia

    There’s gold in their name and that’s just what the Ohio Outlaws Gold softball squad is gunning for at the USA-ASA 16-and-under Nationals this week in Salem, Va.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Brandon Easton A Don McCormack column:Easton on right pitch in Florida

    Paying a Monday morning visit to the variety store...

    Firing away
    The second summer as a professional baseball player has been an excellent one for Brandon Easton, to this point.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

Little League All-Stars July 1 to 12
AP NASCAR Lastest News
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Schedule
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings
AP Auto Racing Photos
West Side Shootout 2014
Ashtabula County at State Track Meet
Jefferson vs Akron St. Vincent St. Mary Regional Softball
District Track 2014
Jefferson District Softball Tournament
Bob Walters 50 Years
Geneva vs Perry Division II District Semifinal
Sports Week in Review May 12 to May 17
Sports Week in Review May 5 to May 10 2014
Sports Week in Review April 28 to May 3
Sports Video Archive
House Ads
AP Video