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Lathrup Village

Babb faces challenges from every angle as he attempts to create Lathrup soccer

September 18, 2012

» click to enlarge «
Lathrup’s Babaaliou Dia (13) battles for the ball with a West Bloomfield player. The Chargers are in their first year as a varsity squad.

LATHRUP VILLAGE — James Babb is in the construction business, and right now, his one and only project is putting together the boys soccer program at Lathrup Village Southfield Lathrup.

After operating as a club in 2011, when the team went winless, the Chargers entered 2012 as a varsity team looking to establish itself as a legitimate force moving forward.

“This is completely building a program, in every sense,” Babb said with a laugh.

One of things he’s struggling with early on is communication, as English is a second language for some players.

“That’s one of the biggest issues, the language barrier,” Babb said. “It’ll get a little better soon when one of our assistants gets back, and he can bridge that gap. Until then, it’s just another thing we have to deal with, but we’re working at it.”

And that’s the main thing, continued work and progression.

At press time, the Chargers were 1-3-0, having picked up their first win against Hazel Park in an 8-0 final.

It’s a start, Babb hopes, to what the program will transition to in the not-too-distant future.

“The majority of this roster is freshmen and sophomores,” Babb said. “So we’re working now for the next two and three years, and beyond. … We want to turn this program into one based on winning. ... And from there, we can get kids playing that move on to college, that become good, productive people. It’s a lot of work and it will take some time, but that’s what we’re trying to do.”

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Thanks to two early scores, some lock-down defense, and a touchdown with just 5:25 remaining in regulation, the Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day football team picked up a 20-13 victory against Milan High in a Division 4 regional final on Nov. 14 and earned this week’s Team of the Week honor. Country Day, which had outscored its opponents 78-7 in the district round, advanced to the state semifinals for the second year in a row. The Yellowjackets (11-1) face Flint Powers Catholic (10-2) at 1 p.m. Nov. 21 at West Bloomfield High.

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