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May 3, 2014

Soccer a way back for Mosley after cancer battle

CHICKASHA —

Cooper Mosley sees the world, and subsequently the pitch, a bit differently than most high school juniors.

The Chickasha attacking midfielder is a product of his past, one of soccer dreams and a necessity for hope in the face of a seemingly insurmountable experience. Twice diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma as a child, he has overcome this much in the same way a goal is created: with the help and attention of others and a unified mindset.

And if ever there is a time this test of spirit gets to him, there is always the sanctuary of a soccer field.

"On the field, that's my place where everything disappears," Cooper said. "The field and the weight room, that's where I don't think about anything other than what's on hand."

It's been like that since Cooper was four, when parents Chris and Suehzen encouraged him to take up soccer. Even from a young age, Chris said, he seemed to have a unique understanding of the game.

"He and a teammate were running down the field, Cooper had the ball and he had one defender between them and the goal," Chris said, recalling a game at the under-6 age level. "He slows down a bit and starts motioning, waving to the right. His teammate peals off to the right and he passes it to him, around the defender.

"Here he is aged five, and he understands. That's something we had never worked on. So I knew he understood how to play the game."

Chris was part of the first Chickasha Youth Soccer Association high school group, back when the school didn't have a soccer program. He passed this enjoyment onto Cooper and his older son, Kyle, coaching them both as they grew in the game. Cooper and his teammates from an under-10 team even played up a season so that he and Kyle could share the same field.

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