TRURO – Could the third time be the charm for the Cobequid Cougars?
They certainly think, and hope, so.
After getting to the NSSAF Division 1 girls soccer championship tournament the past two seasons, the Cougars are hoping they can bring back a title banner in their third attempt. They settled for silver in 2012 and finished fourth a year ago.
“Definitely,” coach Trevor Gordon said. “We have another great team again this year.”
Cobequid opens its season today when it travels to New Glasgow to take on the North Nova Gryphons at 4:30 p.m.
The Cougars feel that way thanks to some excellent team balance. The 2010 squad was an offensively gifted group while last year’s edition of the team was rock solid on the back end. This time around, the Cougars are strong at both ends of the field.
“This year is a complete balance on defence and up front,” said senior keeper Ashley Morrell.
The Cougars also have reason to be excited thanks to the experience of competing in a pair of provincial tournaments. Now, especially the Grade 12 players, know what it takes to win.
“We know what’s out there and we know what to expect so we’ve just got to bring it,” Morrell said.
The appearances in the final-four have also created a new attitude around the team, which has also won the past four Northumberland Region titles. Now, instead of hoping to get to provincials, they plan on competing there.
“We feel like we belong among the top teams,” Gordon said. “We know we have to work for it but it’s an attainable goal.”
Gordon said he feels the team has no holes in its lineup, which will make it tough for opponents to match up against.
“It’s going to be really important because we won’t be looking for one person to do everything,” senior midfielder Brittany MacKay said. “We can give the ball to anyone and they’ll help the team out.”
“Other teams won’t have one person to mark and put two people on, they’ll have to focus on the whole team so that spreads them out and if that causes confusion we can use it to our advantage,” Morrell added.