Home highschool soccer groups sit up for a “regular” season – Press Enterprise

There was increased excitement during Monday night’s soccer practice at Norco High School.

Norco was among several domestic soccer teams training in full pads for the first time this summer, another sign that the start of the 2021 season is imminent. The Cougars are preparing for their scrimmage against JSerra on August 13th and their week 0 season opener against Vista Murrieta on August 20th.

  • Norco Defensive Coordinator Jeff Huerta gets the attention of his linemen as he shouts orders to the fullest during training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco high quarterback Kyle Crum stretches with the team during practice in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco high wide receiver jumps to make the catch when it is hit in full pads by a defender during practice in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High football players clash in full pads during practice in the late afternoon heat in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco High football player is taking a break from training Monday, August 2, 2021 to cool off with ice on his head from the heat of the Inland Empire in Norco. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High Football Quarterbacks will work on ball handling during practice in Full Pads in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco wide receiver frees itself from a defender after catching during training with full pads in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Hydration is key for soccer players in the heat of the Inland Empire as a Norco player cools off while training in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco high wide receiver jumps to catch a defender during practice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco Defensive Coordinator Jeff Huerta gets the attention of his linemen as he shouts orders to the fullest during training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High Football head coach Chuck Chastain during team training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • The Norco High football team will train on full pads in Norco on Monday, August 2nd, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco High football player is taking a break from training on Monday, August 2, 2021 to cool off from the heat at the Inland Empire in Norco. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High quarterback Kyle Crum throws the ball at a running back during practice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco high wide receiver jumps during training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021 to make the catch in the end zone. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High Linemen will control the line during training on the complete pads in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco Defensive Coordinator Jeff Huerta caught the attention of his linemen when he shouted commands in full pads during training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High’s linebackers will tackle the full pads during training on Monday, August 2, 2021 in Norco. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco High football players drink fluids during a training break in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Hydration is key for soccer players in the high heat of the Inland Empire as Norco players will drink water during practice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco High player celebrates after breaking free after being caught during practice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco wide receiver catches the ball in the end zone during practice in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco high wide receiver does an over the shoulder behind a defender during practice in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco High football player takes a training break in the heat of the Inland Empire while cooling off with ice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Norco high quarterback Kyle Crum persists during practice in Norco on Monday August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • Hydration is key for soccer players in the high heat of the Inland Empire as a Norco player drinks water while training in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • A Norco High soccer player goes to fetch water during a training break in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

  • When entering the stadium for the football team training at Norco High in Norco on Monday, August 2, 2021, drinking water is displayed on a sign. (Photo by Terry Pierson, The Press-Enterprise / SCNG)

“I think everyone is looking forward to having a normal season again,” said Norco senior quarterback Kyle Crum.

The past football season was anything but normal, as the coronavirus pandemic delayed the start of the season several times. Most domestic teams only managed to play 3 to 5 games in the spring due to this late start, and there were no CIF Southern Section playoffs for the first time since 1943-44 (World War II).

Brian Hildebrand, a freshman coach at Rancho Cucamonga, said he could feel the enthusiasm of his players.

“Last year was definitely a challenging time for everyone,” said Hildebrand, who led the Temescal Canyon to a 4-1 record in the shortened spring season. “Now there is a clear path and the roadmap has been set. That gave them a greater sense of hope and they are all very excited to come out and compete. ”

Norco made the most of the shortened spring season, winning 5-0 and beating Big VIII League rivals Centennial for the first time since 2009. Cougars coach Chuck Chastain gave players a week-long hiatus after the final game of the season (April 15), but the team headed back to the weight room to prepare for a new season.

“That short break made for a busy summer, but everyone is looking forward to having a full and normal season again,” said Chastain. “It definitely feels very different from where we were at this point last year.”

Crum said he was looking forward to anything related to the game day experience.

“It will be great to have the stands full on Friday night, wearing our jerseys to school and seeing everyone excited about the game,” said Crum. “I can barely wait for it. I want to make the most of my senior season. ”

Teams playing their opening games in Week 1 (August 26-28) can practice in full pads later that week or early next week.

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