Biloxi Sees Record Number Of Soccer Players

More children than ever are getting a kick out of Biloxi soccer. This year a record number of players signed up for the city's youth soccer program about 1,300. A few years ago Biloxi parents stopped having to hustle to get the money for their children to play youth sports.

"A lot of leagues across the state of Mississippi charge anywhere from 50 to 75 dollars per child to play soccer," said president of the Biloxi Soccer Organization Bill Ramsey. "That's pretty expensive when you've got 2 or 3 children."

Free registration is part of the bigger picture in discovering why so many more kids are picking up soccer balls.

Soccer coach and parent Kipp Greggory said kids are being inspired "mainly because of the Women's World Cup. When they won, you saw the girls especially just thrive from that exposure nationally."

Coaches say soccer is game that can be fun for the whole family. Growing Biloxi soccer may be the work of the kids themselves. Chris Dunnells/Soccer player 4 years.

"Because other people are telling them about it," said Chris Dunnells whose been playing soccer for four years. "I'm gotten about 5 of my friends I've gotten to come and play because I've told them about this."

The Biloxi Soccer Organization is now the third largest in the state. President Bill Ramsey says next year some children will be playing at the new soccer complex being built next to the high school. The complex will include three international size fields.

by Danielle Thomas