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April 19, 2018

For the Vietzke’s, Power Soccer is a Retreat

Michael L. Sack

Power soccer is a great way for an individual with a disability to join a team sport. It gives a person who wants competitiveness to experience the thrill of partaking in an organized league. Leadership and communication skills also factor in. Ultimately, power soccer makes an athlete otherwise constricted, feel the freedom and independence when they roll on a court. That is especially true for Jason Vietzke.

Vietzke once played baseball for the Miracle League, an organization that assist youth with disabilities in playing baseball. He grew disinterested in that he could not bat for himself. In response, Vietzke and his parents agreed it was time for a change and a hunt ensued for his next sports outlet.

Nine years ago, his mother, Amy, was paging through a Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute (formerly Courage Center) catalog when she came upon the recreation section. Amy, who was searching for an activity for her son, spotted power soccer. “After that I went up to power soccer camp [in Maple Lake, Minnesota] and watched them play,” Vietzke said.

Since the initial introduction to power soccer, the 18-year-old seemingly found his passion. Vietzke started playing for Courage Kenny in 2010, then joined a different team in 2013. Currently, Vietzke competes in the Champions division, playing for the Minnesota Northern Lights. Although he does not have any memorable events, Vietzke enjoys the traveling aspect of the sport. “My favorite place to travel is the end of year tournament since it means I get to play and watch a lot power soccer,” he mentioned.

Vietzke is kind-hearted, however his competitive juices go into effect out on the gym floor. When in competition, he focuses on offense. After all, that is how a team wins. “A majority of the time I just focus on supporting my teammates.” Vietzke continued to describe his playing style. “My best skill would probably be inbounding the ball.”

Vietzke is close to his brother, Michael. His brother attends most of his practices, even helping out when need be. Vietzke enjoys this, as according to him, “Michael helps make the practices run more efficiently, plus it is good to have another person there to act as a goalie or defender since we only have 5 players.” To solidify this family’s power soccer craze, Vietzke’s father, Darian, is his assistant coach this year.

When not hitting the courts, the high schooler likes to read, play video games, hang with friends, and enjoys attending Minnesota Wild and United soccer games. So much so that his family has been United season tickets holders for four seasons. Vietzke declared that the matches are “awesome,” saying that soccer “is the best sport and it is suspenseful.”

Looking towards the future, Vietzke is content on playing power soccer locally and nationally for fun and the “need an outlet for {his} competitive nature.” Nonetheless, no one should forget about him. “It would be cool to play the World Cup or Paralympics,” the Blaine, Minnesota resident pondered.

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