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Pickup soccer game provides international connections

Pickup soccer game provides international connections

3:12 PM, Jul. 26, 2013
George Ramirez, center, takes the ball past Ken Budzan, left, and Craig Wagner, right, during a game of pickup soccer recently at Madison Elementary School in Marshfield.
George Ramirez, center, takes the ball past Ken Budzan, left, and Craig Wagner, right, during a game of pickup soccer recently at Madison Elementary School in Marshfield.
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It's widely acknowledged that soccer is the world's sport, able to break down cultural barriers and serve as a common language. A core group of Marshfield residents are symbolizing that each week during impromptu pickup games.

For the past eight years, the pickup games, currently played at Madison Elementary School on Wednesday evenings, have grown to the point where some nights a full 11 on 11 game can be had.

"It's really grown through word of mouth. When we first started, we were lucky to get about 10 people to show up," said Rob Wagner, one of the unofficial organizers of the group. "Most ...

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If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

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