Whitecaps FC Kootenay light up showcase spotlight

The Whitecaps FC Kootenay Academy girl’s lit up the competition at the 2018 AstroTurf Collegiate Showcase with only one defeat between the two teams.

The Whitecaps FC Kootenay girls lit up the competition at the 2018 AstroTurf Collegiate Showcase at Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila, Washington.

The Kootenay U-18 girls have been crowned champions at this year’s showcase, while the U-16 Kootenay girls came away with only one loss.

WATCH:

With the success of the team, it shows the development of the players from this region.

“It was a complete surprise,” said Sam Heap, Whitecaps FC Kootenay Academy head coach, about the U-18 team that went undefeated with three wins and one draw.

“The way they played was fantastic. It was probably some of the best stuff we have seen in that age group. It proves that the transition of the program works.”

There was a group of 17 girls on the team, and 10 of the players were playing an age group up.

Cranbrook was represented by three players on the Kootenay team. Sarah Engler, leading goal scorer, Sarah Brooks-White and goaltender Kaiden Thorpe who played three years up.

“This is the first time they won. We had the most points out of 15 teams there. So, it was the first time that has ever happened,” said Heap.

“We have never won three out of four games- – it’s incredible. Especially when you look at the level of competition we are playing against. Some of the teams were state champions and all kinds of stuff.”

Getting those wins will be positive for their confidence, especially when they are looking to be scouted.

“To see the ‘W’ next to some results is really good for confidence. It really builds them up a lot and shows we are going in the right direction as well,” said Heap.

The U-16 team finished the tournament with three draws and one loss with a lot of the players on the team playing an age group up.

“The team they lost to was from the island, and that team has gone 9-1 this year, so they were pretty decent,” said Heap adding the three draws came from the tough competition by American teams.

“It was a good experience for them. Predominately in that age, you get mixed results. It’s usually the older age groups that really come in their own, but it was a pretty good weekend.”

Ten of the players in the U-16 group are from Cranbrook.

The showcase is an annual tournament and sees the best teams battling it out in the field. At the event, there are many coaches and scouts from university and colleges who look to recruit.

All of the girls who have participated have a target to get scholarships as part of the Caps to College program. The selection-based system is designed for players U-15 to U-18 who are looking for opportunities to play in college, university and beyond.

“We are hoping to keep winning and getting good performances that more scouts come knocking at our doors,” said Heap, noting each year there are usually five to seven players signed for scholarships throughout the academy.

In the last two years, there have been 14 Kootenay players who have moved on to post-secondary soccer, which is evidence of the focus the club has made to these smaller regions.

“This program really shows how seriously the club is taking their focus towards improving the level in these smaller regions, and giving them the opportunity to shine and be showcased,” said Heap.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

Tom Shypitka, pictured with his campaign team. on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. Trevor Crawley photo
Shypitka wins second term; BC NDP cruise to majority

“Election Days,” rather than “Election Day,” may be the more accurate term… Continue reading

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

NDP Leader John Horgan elbow bumps NDP candidate Coquitlam-Burke Mountain candidate Fin Donnelly following a seniors round table in Coquitlam, B.C., Tuesday, October 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, NDP head for majority in B.C. election results

Record number of mail-in ballots may shift results

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The Canadian border is pictured at the Peace Arch Canada/USA border crossing in Surrey, B.C. Friday, March 20, 2020. More than 4.6 million people have arrived in Canada since the border closed last March and fewer than one-quarter of them were ordered to quarantine while the rest were deemed “essential” and exempted from quarantining. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Majority of international travellers since March deemed ‘essential’, avoid quarantine

As of Oct. 20, 3.5 million travellers had been deemed essential, and another 1.1 million were considered non-essential

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Most Read