The St. Martin de Porres Kodiaks girls’ soccer team achieved a huge milestone Oct. 20 when the team took part in its first Calgary Senior High School Athletic Association City Championship.
Unfortunately, the team couldn’t make the most of the opportunity, falling 3-2.
“I think our last two games were the best games we’ve had here since we’ve started a female team,” co-coach Cher MacIsaac said. “Considering we didn’t think we were going to field a team in September, we are extremely pleased.”
MacIsaac said there was a sense of uncertainty around coming into the 2017 season due to a majority of last year’s roster graduating, leaving a depleted roster.
But as the season inched closer, the Kodiaks were able to field a team that posted a modest 2-3-1 record, finished fifth in its pool and was seeded into the Division 4 playoff bracket.
With such a young roster, Grade 12 athlete Halle German was named team captain in her third year with the squad and, although she had to change up the way she carried herself and performed on the pitch, she said it was a huge honour leading the young team to a city championship.
“I don’t think anyone thought we would make it that far because of the season we had,” German said. “I’m very happy with what we accomplished.
“Everyone was supportive, the Grade 11s and 10s knew what the expectations were going in to (the season).”
She added it took her awhile to get accustomed to her new role but, once she did, it became a natural fit.
Through the regular season, the Kodiaks played in closely contested games, scoring 16 goals and giving up 17 in the span of its first six games.
“We had a tight defensive line. Most of our older players and one of our new Grade 10s stepped up,” German said.
In the playoffs, the team tightened up defensively and started to find the back of the net more frequently, knocking off the Forest Lawn Titans 10-3 in the quarterfinals and the Central Memorial Rams 3-1, en route to its first city final.
Although there is a level of sadness moving on from the team, German said she is happy with what she accomplished as team captain and has high expectations for the next group of girls looking to finally win a city championship for St. Martin.
“I was really upset about (soccer ending),” German said. “It’s such a fun and positive team here at St. Martin, it’s sad leaving that.”
MacIsaac said there is a good core intact for next season. Losing just five Grade 12 players this year and with a strong crop of Grade 9s eligible next year, the future is bright form Kodiaks soccer.