Miracle Smiles: Chants give, receive from soccer league

The Coastal Carolina men’s soccer team had just won a big conference match, a 3-0 shutout at UNC Asheville, just 48 hours earlier.

In doing so, Shaun Docking broke the program’s record for most wins by a coach, and the Chanticleers moved up in the national polls to No. 19.

So how did they celebrate? Same as every Monday, by volunteering their time by playing with the special-needs children of Miracle League Soccer.

“It’s a great opportunity for our team to get to know the kids and see their smiling faces,” Docking said. “Our guys are the ones smiling the biggest.”

The upstart league, an offshoot of the successful Grand Strand Miracle League baseball program, has 56 children participating in its first season. With the help of various groups around the Grand Strand, but especially the CCU soccer team that helps every week, the soccer program is a hit.

But the overnight success has actually been a work in progress for more than two years. Phillips, whose oldest of three sons is autistic, was attending one of his younger brother’s soccer games when the “miracle” was born.

Horry County Parks & Recreation district supervisor saw her and asked if she thought a special-needs soccer league would go over on the Grand Strand and, as the old saying goes, she took the ball and ran with it.

After contacting the baseball-version of the Miracle League for support, using the Internet and Facebook to find prospective players and enlisting the CCU soccer program’s aid, something special was finally born this fall.

“My oldest son was wondering why we were going to his brothers’ games but not his,” Phillips said. “Jason brought up the idea and I knew there had to be more kids and parents out there in my situation. We’ve received so much support from so many people to make it work. It really is a miracle.”

On Monday night’s this fall, dozens of special-needs children volunteers and CCU soccer players meet on the Miracle League baseball field to play. Goals are set up on the field and the action has even spilled out onto the adjoining lawn to make room for more players and more room to roam.

Unlike the baseball games, which have a bit of a fun, festival atmosphere with an announcer and music over the PA, the soccer games are low key. That’s because Burton and Phillips want to specifically cater to children with autism, who often do not respond well to loud noise and big crowds.

“This is perfect, better than we imagined,” Phillips said. “It means so much for the children to have this time every week. It makes a huge difference in their lives.”

The Miracle League Soccer’s fall season comes to an next Monday, but it will be back in the spring, hopefully with even more kids to participate. And Docking and his players will be back too.

“Our guys wouldn’t miss it,” Docking said. “This is one of the things I don’t have to make them do. They look forward to it. I think they get as much out of it as the kids.”

Photo courtesy of Miracle League Soccer

 

Comments

comments

Tennis: Braves, Saints net big wins over region rivals

Tennis: Braves, Saints net big wins over region rivalsThe Socastee High girls tennis team delivered an impressive 1-2 [more]

Volleyball: Panthers, Saints, Sharks sweep region foes

Volleyball: Panthers, Saints, Sharks sweep region foesIn a showdown for first place in Region 6-5A standings, [more]

Socastee boys, NMB girls take second at XC meet

Socastee boys, NMB girls take second at XC meetFive Grand Strand area cross country teams hit the ground [more]

Golf: Braves top Warriors; Tigers, Chiefs battle Aynor

Golf: Braves top Warriors; Tigers, Chiefs battle AynorThe Conway and North Myrtle Beach girls golf teams narrowly [more]

MB's Edwards, SJ's White finalize college decisions

MB's Edwards, SJ's White finalize college decisions  A pair of recent Grand Strand Sports Report Athlete of [more]

Chanticleers, Gamecocks meet in '18 season opener

Chanticleers, Gamecocks meet in '18 season openerThe Coastal Carolina University football team will open the 2018 [more]

Villanueva becomes latest ex-Pelican to make majors

Villanueva becomes latest ex-Pelican to make majorsFormer Myrtle Beach Pelicans infielder Christian Villanueva made his major [more]

Lady Chiefs sweep season series vs. West Brunswick

Lady Chiefs sweep season series vs. West BrunswickThe North Myrtle Beach High volleyball team made sure that [more]

CCU golf fourth, Obecny second at VCU Shootout

CCU golf fourth, Obecny second at VCU ShootoutThe Coastal Carolina men’s golf team shot a 3-under par [more]

St. James takes runner-up at Lady Patriot Invitational

St. James takes runner-up at Lady Patriot InvitationalThe St. James High girls golf team went toe-to-toe with [more]

Photos: No TDs but loads of fun at Panthers' debut

Photos: No TDs but loads of fun at Panthers' debutA sellout crowd enjoyed the Carolina Panthers' 2017 home opener [more]

Lady Chants bounce back to claim first Sun Belt win

Lady Chants bounce back to claim first Sun Belt winCoastal Carolina women's soccer team got back in the win [more]

Carolina Forest swimmers win Socastee Invitational

Carolina Forest swimmers win Socastee InvitationalThe Carolina Forest swimming teams continued their successful seasons by [more]

CCU's comeback bid falls short in road loss to UAB

CCU's comeback bid falls short in road loss to UABCoastal Carolina scored 18 second-half points and only allowed 116 [more]

Chants open Sun Belt title defense with loss to GSU

Chants open Sun Belt title defense with loss to GSUCoastal Carolina began defense of its 2016 Sun Belt Championship [more]

NMB shows it's for 'Reel' with blowout of Socastee

NMB shows it's for 'Reel' with blowout of SocasteeIn a highly anticipated showdown between undefeated North Myrtle Beach [more]

Seahawks' D bounces back by pouncing on Panthers

Seahawks' D bounces back by pouncing on PanthersWill the real Myrtle Beach High defense please stand up? [more]

Sharks let one slip away as Bulldogs feast on fumbles

Sharks let one slip away as Bulldogs feast on fumblesOne week after pulling off an amazing comeback win, the [more]

Christian Academy works overtime to earn wild win

Christian Academy works overtime to earn wild winOn a big Friday night for public school football on [more]

Volleyball: MB wins home debut; Panthers sweep SF

Volleyball: MB wins home debut; Panthers sweep SFThe Myrtle Beach High volleyball team finally got the opportunity [more]

Golf: Panthers move to 4-0; Sharks roll past Seahawks

Golf: Panthers move to 4-0; Sharks roll past Seahawks Carolina Forest's Sami Spencer shot a career-best 3-under-par 33 to [more]

Lady Chiefs run away with big win over county rivals

Lady Chiefs run away with big win over county rivalsThe North Myrtle Beach High girls cross country team took [more]

Volleyball: Sharks prevail; Tomlin nets triple-double

Volleyball: Sharks prevail; Tomlin nets triple-doubleNo stranger to triple-doubles on the basketball court, Carolina Forest's [more]

Week 5 Previews & Picks: Local rivalries mark lineup

Week 5 Previews & Picks: Local rivalries mark lineupSo far WPDE TV and sister station CW 21's foray [more]

Saints volleyball gears up for another state title run

Saints volleyball gears up for another state title runFollowing a surprising run to the SCISA Class AA state [more]

Tennis: Braves, Saints net big wins over region rivals

Tennis: Braves, Saints net big wins over region rivalsThe Socastee High girls tennis team delivered an impressive 1-2 [more]

Volleyball: Panthers, Saints, Sharks sweep region foes

Volleyball: Panthers, Saints, Sharks sweep region foesIn a showdown for first place in Region 6-5A standings, [more]

One response to “Miracle Smiles: Chants give, receive from soccer league”

  1. Jennifer Phillips says:

    Great article!!!!!!!

© 2017 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach