Zachary Crane bound for On­tario

Clarke’s Beach keeper named to provin­cial un­der-12 male team

The Compass - - SPORTS - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

When it comes to provin­cial teams and the Trin­ity-Con­cep­tion-Pla­cen­tia re­gion, you’d ex­pect to hear young ath­letes ex­celling in hockey or base­ball.

Now you can add soc­cer to that list as Clarke’s Beach res­i­dent Zachary Crane has been named to the provin­cial un­der-12 male team and will be trav­el­ling to Toronto, Ont., for an ex­hi­bi­tion se­ries July 10-14.

The 12-year-old is a keeper with the CBN Light­ning foot­ball — soc­cer — club.

At first glance, Zachary ap­pears made for a ca­reer be­tween the goal posts. He’s tall for his age, has long limbs and is quick in his move­ments. His height, com­bined with his lengthy ap­pendages, makes him an in­tim­i­dat­ing fig­ure for op­pos­ing strik­ers.

“I’m pretty ex­cited to go,” said Zachary, smil­ing.

Dur­ing the trip, soc­cer may come sec­ondary for the young foot­baller. The group is sched­uled to take in a Toronto FC match with the Hous­ton Dy­namo at BMO Field on July 12.

The clos­est Zachary has come to a pro­fes­sional soc­cer ex­pe­ri­ence is play­ing FIFA ’14 on his Xbox.

Get­ting into goal­tend­ing

Zachary started play­ing “the beau­ti­ful game” at the ten­der age of five. How­ever, his move to goal­tend­ing did not come un­til some years later, at age 10.

That was when the Light­ning brought in Gary Forsyth, a Scot­tish ex-pat, as di­rec­tor of soc­cer op­er­a­tions. Forsyth, a renowned goal- tend­ing coach, quickly saw the skill the young keeper had and started men­tor­ing him on the finer points of the po­si­tion.

When asked why he en­joys goal­tend­ing, Zachary smiled —there it is again —broadly and stated, “I like stop­ping the ball.”

Zachary plays hockey with Bay Arena mi­nor and has played goal in the past. Dur­ing his stint on the ice, he grav­i­tated to­wards the goal.

“I’ve al­ways liked stop­ping shots,” he noted.

Work ethic

Zachary’s fa­ther, Shawn, sees his se­lec­tion to the provin­cial team as a tes­ta­ment to the hard work his son puts into his craft.

“Ev­ery­thing he does, (Zachary) throws him­self into it,” he said.

CBN Light­ning pres­i­dent Robert Tar­rant said he saw Zachary’s ex­cep­tional abil­ity early on.

“Zachary had great hands, ex­cep­tional speed for re­flex saves, fan­tas­tic ball con­trol, great po­si­tion­ing in the goal and he was fear­less,” he said. “Zachary is a pre­mier goal­keeper and un­doubtably the best in his age group in the prov­ince.”

It’s not only the pro­fes­sional soc­cer that Zachary buzzing about his up­com­ing op­por­tu­nity. He is also look­ing for­ward to test­ing him­self against some of the best talent in his age group.

“I want to see what the other play­ers are like,” said Zachary.

Photo by Ni­cholas Mercer/The Com­pass

Clarke’s Beach res­i­dent Zachary Crane, 12, has been named to the provin­cial un­der-12 male team and will be trav­el­ling to Toronto, Ont., for a ex­hi­bi­tion se­ries July 10-14.

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