University of Calgary

On the pitch

UToday HomeSeptember 7, 2012

By Lance Doucet

Photo by David MollPhoto by David MollWOMEN

A fresh group of faces will hit West Varsity Soccer Pitch this season as a rejuvenated Dinos women’s soccer team looks to make its impact on the new-look Canada West conference.

Last season, the Dinos failed to make the playoffs under new head coach Matthew Shepherd as they finished in sixth place with a 6-5-3 record. The club will need to find a way to get wins on their own pitch this season. Last year, Calgary was 1-4-2 at home despite having one of the best road records in the conference at 5-1-1.

There will be five players for Calgary to replace this upcoming season as Caitlin Milne, Saaraa Premji, Katrina Stauss, and Deanna Fidler all completed their five years of eligibility in 2011. The Dinos will also have to do without Tessa Miller, who has been one of the top players on the team for the past several years. Fourth-year player Sarah Benson will likely be asked to take the lead on offence for the team. Benson was second in goals scored on the Dinos with five in 2011.

Calgary will be one of the youngest teams in the conference this year, coming in with 12 potential players competing in their first year of eligibility in the CIS.

The Dinos travel to UB C to take on the Thunderbirds in their season opener on Sept. 7 before visiting the Trinity Western Spartans the next evening. Calgary’s home opener comes Sept. 15 against the rival University of Alberta Pandas.

 

MEN

A revamp to Canada West’s soccer format has added to the anticipation building for Dinos men’s soccer team as they gear up for start of the 2012 season.

Last year, the Dinos fell short of their goal of a second consecutive spot in the post-season, landing in fifth-place with a 6-6-2 mark after a hot 3-1-0 start.

With UNBC and Mount Royal joining the conference, and Winnipeg being accepted to field men’s and women’s soccer teams, men’s soccer will now have six playoff positions up for grabs. Teams will play out of two divisions, the Pacific and Prairie. The Dinos will play out of the Prairie division along with Alberta, Lethbridge, Mount Royal, Saskatchewan and Winnipeg.

The Dinos will begin the season on the road as they travel west to take on the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds on Sept. 7 and the Trinity Western Spartans the following night. On Sept. 15, Calgary will play the Pronghorns in Lethbridge with the rematch happening at West Varsity Soccer Pitch the next day.