Go­ing for gold

The News (New Glasgow) - - FRONT PAGE -

Two play­ers from New Glas­gow are join­ing Hal­i­fax team for na­tional com­pe­ti­tion in Fred­er­ic­ton.

Isaac MacDon­ald and Car­son Ripoll have been play­ing sports to­gether since they were six years old. Now the New Glas­gow pair are about to head to a na­tional cham­pi­onship to­gether as team­mates on Hal­i­fax City FC of the U 17 AAA boys Nova Sco­tia pro­vin­cial soc­cer league.

The com­pe­ti­tion will be held Oct. 4-10 in Fred­er­ic­ton and will in­clude top teams from across the coun­try in­clud­ing Al­berta, On­tario and Que­bec.

MacDon­ald has been play­ing with the Hal­i­fax-based team for three years and pre­vi­ously played for the team at a na­tional tour­na­ment in Van­cou­ver.

He said the com­pe­ti­tion will be tough, but it’s a great ex­pe­ri­ence.

Al­ready the team has ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions by go­ing un­de­feated dur­ing their reg­u­lar sea­son on their win­ning provin­cials.

“On pa­per we didn’t re­ally look like a strong team,” said Ripoll. “Peo­ple were ex­pect­ing us to not do well, but we went un­de­feated the whole sea­son. Ev­ery game was played just re­ally well.”

With no AAA teams of­fered in Pic­tou County, join­ing the Hal­i­fax team was a way for the two to ex­tend their soc­cer ca­reers at the top level pos­si­ble and they be­lieve it has paid off.

MacDon­ald said the coaches are re­ally good and have helped them im­prove.

It’s taken a big com­mit­ment from them and their fam­i­lies, with about three trips to Hal­i­fax each week for prac­tices and games.

The na­tional cham­pi­onships will mark their fi­nal chap­ter of youth soc­cer – next year they en­ter se­nior men’s league and both plan to even­tu­ally play var­sity soc­cer at the uni­ver­sity level.

They couldn’t think of a bet­ter way to end their youth soc­cer.

“It’s kind of a once in a life­time thing for youth sports,” said Ripoll.

ADAM MACINNIS/THE NEWS

Isaac MacDon­ald and Car­son Ripoll are headed to a na­tional soc­cer cham­pi­onship to­gether.

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