South Colchester girls soccer team out to achieve success both on the pitch and in life
BROOKFIELD - Call it the same ol, same ol when it comes to expectations for South Colchester Academy's senior girls soccer team.
A longtime perennial contender for the Nova Scotia School Athletic Federation Division 2 championship, the Wolves are setting their sights directly on another successful season on and off the pitch.
"The thing that's really nice is all the kids understand the expectations," said Wolves coach Larry MacKenzie. "The kids know what the program is about. It's not recreational soccer. They understand what we're trying to do - we're trying to have success, and not just on the soccer field but in all things we do."
MacKenzie stresses to the players the importance of not only doing well on the field, but also excelling in the classroom and learning life skills through sport.
"The kids understand that they've got to be in class, they've got to maintain an academic standard, and it's not just that. It's how they conduct themselves when we're on the field, when we're on the practice field, whether it's communication, how we treat one another ... we're trying to provide an overall experience, not just a soccer experience."
The Wolves won the Northumberland region and provincial titles in 2007 and 2005. Last year, the team was bit by the injury bug late in the season and failed to make the provincial tournament.
The Wolves return 11 players, which bodes well for the coming season, said MacKenzie.
"The strength of the team is through the middle of the field and those 11, they're all quality players. So when you return that many and the newcomers fit in and support that, I think we're going to be OK."
Those newcomers include Grade 10 players Ally Campbell, Emily Duykers, Emily Crouse and Sarah Sears, all of whom played in the junior program at SCA.
"It looks as though they are going to be able to step in and help us right away," MacKenzie said. "In our tournament (last weekend) I was pleasantly surprised."
Seniors Paula Serracin, Natasha MacKay, Emily Taylor and Annalyse Myers are expected to provide leadership and play key roles for the Wolves this season.
The Wolves went winless in a pair of tournament games last weekend. They open their Northumberland region regular season tomorrow, as they host the Hants East Tigers at 4:15 p.m.
Myers said there's no shortage of skill on the team, it's just a matter of getting everyone on the same page.
"We're all good soccer players," she said. "Some people just came up from the junior level, so some of them are adjusting to the senior level, so it's just going to take a little bit but it will come together, I hope."
The Wolves will play a four-game regular season schedule - home and away games against Hants East and Amherst.