Barrie’s under-14 girls soccer team claims Ontario Cup with shutout victory over London.
WOODBRIDGE - The Barrie Soccer Club’s under-14 girls team made the city and their club proud by bringing home the Ontario Cup provincial championship on Sunday with a 2-0 win over the London Whitecaps at the Ontario Soccer Association stadium in Woodbridge.
The girls went into this huge match feeling confident in their ability to bring home the provincial crown as they were extremely familiar with their opponent, having played them in last year’s provincial championship quarterfinal and defeating them, 2-1.
The Barrie girls opened the scoring at the 10-minute mark of the first half. A brilliant defensive tackle by Cierra Bedford started the counter attack for Barrie.
After winning the ball from the London attacker, Bedford played a strong forward pass into the feet of striker Abby Bowland.
With an amazing individual effort to beat her man, Bowland played a through ball between the legs of the London defender into the path of her striking partner, Salena Devellis.
Within in striking distance, Devellis beat the last defender with a burst of speed and tucked the ball into the open net after magically walking around the London goalkeeper who had come out with a sliding tackle.
The goal was selected by the Ontario Soccer Association as the highlight of the match.
Although it was the only goal the Barrie girls would need, they pushed forward and were awarded with an insurance goal after some strong work along the right side by Lauren McConnell. A cross through the 18-yard box by McConnell found the feet of Tristan Dent, who slid a pass through into the lane of a streaking Devellis. Devellis again danced around the last defender and slid the ball passed the London goalkeeper for a 2-0 Barrie lead at half-time.
The second half saw the Barrie girls play much more conservatively tasked with defending the lead. With some tactical formation changes by the coaching staff, the Barrie girls defended their two-goal advantage, not allowing London to penetrate their strong defensive wall comprised of Sarah Burch, Heather MacTavish, Kate Cooke, Cierra Bedford, Tristan Dent, Ana Boon, Katrine Thompson and Aliscia Kobylnik.
The celebration began at the final whistle with the Barrie girls charging the field in jubilation. As a sign of respect and appreciation for their fans, the girls carried the provincial trophy towards the grandstand and raised it in triumph in front of their close to 200 Barrie supporters who made the journey to watch the match.
The team’s success this season was summed up by coach Will Devellis. “At the beginning of each season these, ladies come up with a goal,” he said. “Each year they work hard to attain their goal. This year’s goal was the biggest challenge yet: to become provincial champions. They attained their goal, and along the way also captured four tournament championships: Barrie, Stoney Creek, Brossard, Que., and the international Robbie.”
The girls have played the last two rounds including the championship match without their captain, Nathalie Hoppe, who had a season-ending ACL injury. Since the injury, the team dedicated the season and committed to a provincial championship for Hoppe, using the socialmedia post #DoitforNat as their motivation.
The Barrie girls have one remaining game in their regional Central Soccer League this week versus Woodbridge, with the winner being crowned the Central Region champions and earning a spot in the regional champions tournament Oct. 7 -8 in Guelph.
Tryouts for the 2018 season are being held at the Barrie Soccer Club, 7 Currie Dr., in Midhurst, on Tuesday, Sept. 26 from 6-7p.m., Saturday, Sept. 30 from 1:45-2:45 p.m., and Sunday, Oct. 1 from 12:30-1:30pm.
The Barrie under-14 girls soccer team includes, in the back row from left, coach Dave Cooke, Kate Cooke, Cierra Bedford, Madison Walter, Ana Boon, Nathalie Hoppe, Heather MacTavish, Katrine Thompson, Abby Bowland, Alexis Jacklin, coach Will Devellis and manager Kimberly Hoppe. In the front row, from left, are Sarah Burch, Tristan Dent, Salena Devellis, Lauren McConnell, Audrey Bernier, Aliscia Kobylnik and Olivia Swinford.
Members of the Barrie under-14 girls soccer team hoist the Ontario Cup following a win on Sunday over the London Whitecaps.