Posted on: November 12, 2013
Tom McManus is the head coach of the PACWEST champion TRU WolfPack women’s soccer team
For the third straight year the TRU WSOC WolfPack have played to the last possible day in CCAA. We started on August 12th 2013 and finished on November 9th, 2013 with a bronze medal. It has been a great soccer season. The WolfPack went undefeated up to the first game of the nationals where NAIT from Alberta defeated us 1-0 which knocked us out of contention for our chance to win the gold medal. NAIT scored in the first half at the 30 second mark, yes it was very early and they caught us with a quick transition. They kicked off and we took the ball off of them and moved into their end. They won the ball back and went into a quick transition which ended up costing us the game. 1-0 down after 30 seconds is tough to take but we all knew that we could get back into it. We played our possession game and took it to them.
They did have another chance part way through the first half but Emily Edmundson made the save in a scramble. Their coach said to the media that they defended all day and other than the last minutes in the second half that TRU had the ball the entire time. We just couldn’t find the net which is probably the first time this year that has happened. Players were very disappointed and frustrated. We had a team meeting as soon as we got back to the hotel. We went over the game and the players were told to go have something to eat and then get a good night’s sleep and we would meet again in the morning to prepare for out game against Kwantlen.
We did get together and the players were feeling a bit better but as the coaching staff spoke to them I could see the change coming over them, they would be ready. We won 5-0 against Kwantlen. We would now face the team that had beaten us the past two years at nationals and beating us 3-0 in 2011 and 4-0 in 2012.
This time we were ready and were not exhausted as we had been last year with the four hour time zone exhaustion and changing our kick off time from 3:00 in the afternoon to 10:00 in the morning. We won the game 4-1 with Athunstic scoring on a penalty kick in the 90th minute. We just had time to kick off and the official blow the final whistle to end the game. It was a good feeling.
We would now play in the bronze medal game against Algonquin Thunder from Ontario. We didn’t know much about them but what we did know was that they would come out and work very hard against us. We had been beaten up physically the day before but everyone other than one player was fit enough to play.
The game kicked off and they came at us hard. We played out possession game and did well but even though we had a few shots it was nothing that would really test their keeper. Finally in the 45th minute Courtney Daly took a pass from Alanna Bekkering and put it away. At half time we were leading 1-0. We had a good talk during the half time break and went out quickly to put them under pressure. In the 88th minute, the Daly – Bekkering combination paid off again with Alanna once again feeding Courtney and she put it away. We now felt that everything was good and that we wouldn’t give up a goal. The final whistle went and we won 2-0, giving us the bronze medal.
It has been a great final season in PacWest and CCAA as we now move onto CIS and Canada West next year. This will really test us but we are up for it. We have been looking at recruits to come in and step it up in order to play at the next level. I will be looking for players to come and attend TRU and possibly become a WolfPack member.
The players will now take some down time and then in the new year we will once again start training in the indoor facility here in Kamloops with our thoughts being to be competitive in Canada West which will be very tough as we have some of the best teams in Canada right here. I am looking forward to training in the off season and then getting started with a brand new training camp in 2014.
Thanks everyone and I hope that everyone enjoyed the great season and looking forward to the 2014 season.
Tom McManus, Head Coach