After playing lots of soccer in their younger days, two former Nevada teammates are “paying” the knowledge they received about soccer in this town “forward.”

Chelsea Mitchell Heintz and Erin Appelgate Mousel, both products of two Nevada soccer coaching greats — Harv Bainter and Randy Davis — recently put their heads together to coach a team of Nevada girls in the Iowa Games. This was their first tournament coaching together since they joined forces last spring, which was the first time they’d been back together on a soccer field since high school.

Mousel, 36, who works for the city of Nevada, said she’s been asked by Heintz before. “I think this was the first time I’ve actually taken up Chelsea’s offer to help coach.”

And it worked well.

“I think we’re a pretty good balance,” Mousel said.

Heintz, 35, traces their friendship back to first grade, although they were a year apart in school. Mousel graduated with the class of 2001 and Heintz with the class of 2002. “We started playing soccer together in 1994-95. We were lucky enough to be coached by Harv Bainter. We were on a team called Xtreme that Harv put together, along with another parent. We played in tournaments all over and did Iowa Games.”

One of their best memories of youth soccer, the two agree, was playing in the Gothia Cup in Sweden. “It was a great experience, with lots of memories made,” Heintz said.

“Europe was pretty amazing,” Mousel added.

Heintz has been coaching a group of soccer girls for a while now, and she thought it would be fun for Erin to come help out.

“Erin started helping me coach last spring, and we will keep this group of girls this fall,” Heintz said.

Heintz said it’s a fun group of girls and in the recent Iowa Games, they didn’t have enough teams for a U11 bracket, so the group played up a division in U12. “They played very well and kept up with the older girls,” Heintz said.

“Because we played girls that were both the same age and older, it was a great learning experience and great competition for them,” Mousel said.

Mousel doesn’t think of herself as the best coach a team could have. “There’s plenty of others with more knowledge,” she said. For her, coaching with one of her best friends has become a learning opportunity. “These girls have taught me just as much as I hopefully have taught them.”

Both Mousel and Heintz agree they are lucky to be working with the girls they have. “It’s so much fun watching them learn, grow and succeed,” Mousel said.

Heintz said what she and Mousel offer, in terms of knowledge, comes from a strong foundation they had as players, both under Bainter and then under Davis in high school. “Coach Davis was a great coach; we both learned so much from him,” Heintz said. “I told him to stay around until my daughter gets in high school!”