Trinity hosts variety of summer sports camps


Nike collaborated with the Trinity tennis team to host youth camps this past summer. Photo by Allison Wolff

During the summer, the action at Trinity did not stop, as the beautiful campus became home to several summer sports camps. Both the Trinity soccer and tennis programs hosted a variety of camps for children, students and adults.

For soccer, youth camps and ID recruitment clinics served two specific purposes: to serve the community and to recruit. Meanwhile, the tennis camps served the community through programs aimed at children and adults.

The two youth summer camps, which took place in June and July, serviced young soccer players from the community and taught them skills of the game while making sure they had fun. The kids who attended this day camp played indoor soccer during the lunch break, and even got to go swimming.

“We have an excellent program based around teaching technical skills, fundamental tactical principals, playing a lot of fun, competitive games each day,” said Edward Cartee, assistant men’s soccer coach. “You get to work with some really talented players who have some really bright futures in the game.”

The ID clinic, which this year was held the first weekend of August, is organized for elite-level high school soccer players.

“The purpose of those camps isn’t as much skill instruction as it is evaluation and identification of prospects,” Cartee said. “You’re working with high-level players and selecting those you think could contribute to your squad in the future.”

High school soccer players who attend the clinic are interested in playing either at Trinity or at one of the other universities represented at the clinic, including the University of the Incarnate Word, St. Mary’s University and the University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley. Division III coaches from all over the nation show up for three days full of intense soccer.

Patrick Cunneff, first-year soccer player from Houston, was first noticed at the summer ID clinic.

“They didn’t realize until last year that a lot of the kids that they actually do get, they first see at the camps they have here,” Cunneff said.

There were 14 states represented at the August ID clinic, from places like Arizona, New Mexico, California, Florida and Maryland.

“We’re primarily drawing in-state people, but not exclusively,” Cartee said.

The camp also allowed high school players to learn from experts in their respective fields.

Members of the San Antonio Football Club coaching staff, including head coach Darren Powell and goalkeeper coach Diego Restrepo helped instruct the kids.

“Students were able to get a lot of exposure not only to the college environment at the camp, but also the professional environment that we are fortunate enough to have here in town,” Cartee said.

“The thing about the camp I attended it was definitely challenging, but a lot of fun,” Cunneff said.

Meanwhile, summer tennis camps served different purposes. Like soccer, tennis also offers camps for younger players. The kids’ camps were week-long day camps that ran from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. and featured drills to teach the youngest players.

“We had three kids this past camp who had never touched a racket before, so we had to teach them how to play,” said Jacob Carrillo, assistant women’s tennis coach. “Kids who knew more, we just wanted to get them more match play and fixed what needed to be fixed.”

The tennis camps are sponsored by Nike. This year was Trinity University’s first year running Nike tennis camps. Carrillo explained that Nike takes care of all the media and promotion, and also sends prizes to give the kids.

“Nike’s camps are serious and fun and we want to make it as fun as possible. The last day is full of fun and games and we’re competing against each other,” Carrillo said. “It’s like a free-for-all.”

In addition to youth camps, Trinity tennis also hosted adult camps during the summer, which were three-day weekend events.

“The dynamic for the adults is a little more relaxed because you have adults out there that already know the rules and know what not to do, so it’s really more fun with them “˜cause it’s a lot more one-on-one time and they can understand things better than our kids,” Carrillo said.

The camps were a great way for Trinity to reach out to the community and help children gain skills.

“It’s great to see young players in our area and community discovering a greater passion for the game of soccer, the joy that they feel playing it on the field and how enthusiastic they are about going back and practicing even more,” Cartee said.