Print Edition: April 9, 2014
The UFV soccer program is the most up-and-coming of all UFV athletics departments. Both teams made it to the Canada West playoffs, with the men’s team medalling after narrowly losing to the UBC Thunderbirds in semifinal action. The women’s team’s quarterfinal battle against the University of Alberta Pandas, the team that went on to take bronze at a national level, wasn’t decided until the final 20 minutes. Both teams now look poised to take Canada West soccer by storm in the near future.
Not only are nationals a real possibility, but their rosters are stocked with players the university’s program recently honoured with awards.
Last season, Carley Radomski was placed in a starting role for all 12 games because of injuries to teammates. She registered only a goal and two assists on the scoresheet, but her impact was vital to the team’s success. Head coach Rob Giesbrecht saw her as an irreplaceable part of the Cascades’ attack (ranked sixth in Canada West).
“Carley was one of the most highly sought-after recruits in the Fraser Valley,” he says. “Her competitive drive and ability on the ball allowed her to outcompete elite midfielders.”
The winner on the men’s side was Dylan Jordan. Jordan came in later in the season, but likewise had to jump into a starting role with the Cascades defense, starting seven regular season games. He would become a huge part of the defense that played in front of goalkeeper Mark Village. Dylan said of the award, “[It] means a lot being able to attain such a highly regarded reward going up against so many people. It also means so much … in terms of motivation both on and off the field.”
UFV’s soccer program is looking to take the step up and join the upper echelon of programs in the CIS. Both teams’ core players return from last year, and the women’s team has already added five new players through recruiting. When Jordan speaks about soccer players sweeping Rookie of the Year awards, he describes it as “a great accomplishment for our soccer program as a whole,” a program that relies on the continual addition of young players to turn winning seasons into a tradition.
In preseason action, the men’s team has already won a tournament at Kwantlen University, and the women’s team has also played well in pre-season action with a pair of wins over the UBC-O Heat and the SFU Clan.