-Thompson Rivers University Press Release
Kamloops, BC—For the first time in school history, the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack will be playing a soccer match in the province of Manitoba.
The WolfPack women’s team will head to Winnipeg for matches Friday (Sept 4) and Saturday (Sept 5) against the Manitoba Bisons and the Winnipeg Wesmen.
The two matches kick off the 2015 Canada West season for the teams. For TRU, it is their second campaign in the league after going 1-10-1 last year.
WolfPack head coach Tom McManus knows it’ll be an exciting year. “ I thought we got overwhelmed a lot last year. This year, we are expecting to be more competitive. We are looking at this weekend’s matches as being challenging. Manitoba is a very good team. We are looking forward to giving them a good game.”
Manitoba was 4-4-4 last season to sit sixth in the Prairie Division. “I know Manitoba is the better team of the two we play,” McManus states. “It will be an interesting weekend. Winnipeg hasn’t done that well of late (1-11) last year. They have a new head coach there a girl that I used to coach (Amy Anderson) when I lived in Manitoba. “
When he looks at his squad, McManus says his squad has improved over the last few weeks—winning, losing and tying in their three preseason matches. “We are now attacking. We are picking things up in the attacking third. Marisa Mendonca (1st year, striker, Penticton, BC) has been playing well and scored a nice goal last weekend. The girls are getting healthy and they know what I am looking for now.”
He says the players are buying into his system. “The personnel was there from day one. When we played Grande Prairie (ACAC), we were knocking the ball around nicely. But when we hit the attacking third, we didn’t really push it. We have been doing a lot of work in that area in training.”
McManus looks to fifth years Katie Sparrow (Kamloops, BC) and Jaydene Radu (Calgary, AB) to lead the offense. “We also have a good back bone in Jodi Hutton, Brianna Powrie and Sarah Seebach (all Kamloops, BC).
The WolfPack will play their first three weeks of the regular season away from Hillside Stadium. McManus admits that they have to adjust to life on the road. “You look at it and it’s the first six games of the season. It is nice to have familiar surroundings at times. But the cards were dealt this way and we will have to live with it. It will be a bit of bonding for the girls as well which is good.”
Thompson Rivers has five fifth year players (Sparrow, Radu, Powrie, keeper Taylor Shantz and midfielder Danielle Fauteux). He expects them to lead. “Definitely. They know that this is their last year in university soccer and likely the highest level they will ever play. For them, they are will be leaders out there. They already have been in practice. It is great to see. Katie Sparrow and Jaydene Radu have been phenomenal. Danielle is really coming on now. She is quiet but still providing leadership. We appreciate that.”
McManus believes that his side could surprise a few people. “I think we will but a lot of the people who played against us last year did see signs. Even though we didn’t have a great season we had five 1-0 games against the top teams. That alone will make them aware. We played Fraser Valley and were leading 1-0 but they came back to score two goals in a three minute span to beat us. Then they took us 1-0 at their place. They were fourth in Nationals. I am confident we can compete. We just need to get on a roll and keep on going. The nice thing that is our exhibition matches we scored early and dominated things.”
The matches this weekend will be webcast on http://Canadawest.TV. It is a pay per view. The conference’s multi-sport pass gives subscribers access to every regular season and playoff game/event on CW.tv. At $33.75 USD, the multi-sport pass provides tremendous value, at a cost of less than a dime per game.
For fans of a particular sport, the CW single sport pass ($22.50 USD) provides coverage of every game – both men’s and women’s – in one sport.
The third and final option available for viewers is the CW single day pass ($3.75 USD), whichgrants viewers access to every CW webcast on a given day. This viewing option allows fans interested in a particular game, or even the flexibility to enjoy CW.tv at an affordable price.
First home match for the WolfPack will be Saturday, September 22nd at Hillside Stadium against the University of Victoria Vikes. Kick off is 2 pm.