Danielle Ruocco (right) is grabbed by teammate Nicole Mann after potting the winning goal Saturday that earned Princess Margaret Secondary School a provincial soccer title.

Danielle Ruocco (right) is grabbed by teammate Nicole Mann after potting the winning goal Saturday that earned Princess Margaret Secondary School a provincial soccer title.

Mustangs senior girls soccer team wins provincial championship

Mustang Danielle Ruocco nets three to help hosts win provincial soccer tournament

The Princess Margaret Mustangs rose to the top and were crowned AA senior girls soccer champions with a 3-2 victory over the Lambrick Park Lions at King’s Park Saturday.

After opening the tournament with a 1-0 loss to the Smithers Gryphons, the Mustangs reeled off four straights wins to championship glory.

“It was so surreal. It was as if nothing has settled in and we didn’t really realize yet at that time what we had accomplished,” said Olfert, who joined her teammates in swarming goalkeeper Caitlyn Spooner to begin their championship celebration in front of more than 600 spectators and athletes who filled the sidelines and goal line. “Looking over and seeing (Co-coach John) Buckley starting to cry and realizing that this is what we have been working for since we got into high school. We knew this year was going to have to be the year to win provincials.”

In the championship game, the Lion’s opened the scoring on a penalty kick by Emma Entzminger, who scored the Lions’ second goal and finished as the tournament’s leading goal scorer with 10. The Mustangs showed resilience, said Buckely, and fought back to get two goals from game MVP Danielle Ruocco to lead 2-1 at halftime.

The Lions showed no quit and pressed hard, but the Mustangs withstood and Ruocco finished a play by Nicole Mann to bury her third of the match with 25 minutes remaining.

“When she beat the goalie, she had the open net and I just started running,” said Olfert. “I was so excited. I couldn’t believe that she had just walked around another person.”

As good as that moment felt for the Mustangs, Olfert knew they needed to calm down to finish. The Lion’s second goal was a result of a defensive error.

“They were good. They never stopped,” said Olfert. “Their striker, she was phenomenal. We knew that we needed to contain her. We put good defenders on her and she couldn’t get by us.”

Ruocco said the Mustangs played one of their best games in the championship.

“Definitely worked together really well as a team,” said Ruocco, who tied Mann for five goals in the tournament. “It’s what we have been training for all season. It never really set in until I walked into the school this morning and saw the banner sitting there.

“It’s my first time becoming a provincial champ,” continued Ruocco. “It’s the best feeling in the world.”

When asked what it meant to be named tournament MVP, Olfert said, “it’s such an honour.”

“This team, there are so many people that could deserve that award,” she said. “So many people that worked so hard all year. To be able to be recognized for the work that I have done all season. Just to be able to be a part of this team, be part of this experience was just amazing.”

Buckley said it’s a great feeling to win in front of home town fans, parents and colleagues.

“Very rewarding feeling but almost surreal in that it hasn’t really sunk in yet,” said Buckley, who has provincial victories in volleyball hockey and soccer. “This might be the most rewarding as I have coached some of these girls for five years now and they all made an incredible commitment to a program.”

Buckley also said he’s happy for the school and that it was satisfying for the dedication, time  and commitment the players, sponsors, parents and teachers put in to the program.

“We could not have won this title without the support from the city, PFC, sponsors, parents and the volunteer time from a lot of teachers during tough times in education right now,” he said.

The Mustangs punched their ticket into the championship game after defeating the Nanaimo District Islanders 3-1 Friday afternoon. The game pitted Buckley, a University of Victoria alumni, against his former roommate, Iain Baird, a former national team player. After the win, Buckley joked that he earned the bragging rights war, which rewarded him with a Tim Horton’s coffee.

In the game for third, the St. Thomas More Knights defeated the Islanders 1-0.


Taylor Corrie’s winning header has the Princess Margaret Mustangs senior girls soccer team playing for a 2A provincial championship.

The Mustangs punched their ticket to the finale Saturday at 11:30 a.m. at King’s Park 4 with three  unanswered goals in a 3-1 win against the Nanaimo District Islanders.

After the Islanders took a 1-0 lead on a breakaway goal, but it didn’t take long for the Mustangs to reply. With a few passes outside the box, Nicole Mann scored her fifth goal of the tournament. Corrie’s goal, her second of the tournament, came when she sent Cheyenne Miller’s double punched hand save back to the Islanders net with 20 minutes remaining in the game. Danielle Ruocco scored her second of the provincial championship in the dying minutes as she broke through a couple of Islanders defenders cutting to the net and firing a shot on goal.

After the referee blew the whistle to end the game, the Mustangs erupted onto the field in celebration of their championship berth.

Corrie said it was a great feeling to watch her header find the back of the net. She had a few other chances  but wasn’t able to finish.

“It’s nice to get one in,” she said. “We played well as a team and worked together.”

Among the things that Mustangs coach John Buckley liked from his group was their possession and controlled passing.

“I’m starting to see them come back around,” he said.

The Mustangs will now face the winner between Lambrick Park Lions and the St. Thomas More Knights.

“It’s amazing,” said Corrie on playing for the championship. “I have gone to (school) provincials before, but never on a top team. This is really cool.”

Buckely said he would love to see a lot of spectators at the field to support the Mustangs.

Below, Mustangs goalkeeper Caitlyn Spooner cools off teammate Danielle Ruocco after their 3-1 win against the Islanders.


The Princess Margaret Mustangs senior girls soccer team have advanced to the semifinal round of the 2A B.C. high school provincials.

The Mustangs defeated Mark Isfeld Ice 3-1 Friday morning as Nicole Mann had a two-goal effort and Taylor Corrie opened the scoring.

Mustangs coach John Buckley said his team had “their best performance of the tournament” as they played with confidence. Buckely added his players were able to overcome the pressure to win and their efforts began with a strong start. The Mustangs first possession involved nine passes leading to a scoring chance.

Mann said the team is playing their best. She had her second two-goal performance of the tournament and said it felt good to score. She is enjoying her first provincial championship after missing last year’s due to a knee injury.

“It’s really good,” said Mann. “The team was built for this. It’s unreal.”

The Mustangs have noticed the other teams play with a physical presence, something they are not used to.

“It’s making us step up,”  said Mann.

The Mustangs started the provincial championship tournament with a 1-0 loss to the Smithers Gryphons, then rebounded with a 3-1 win against Nelson’s L.V. Rogers Bombers.

At 1 p.m. they will play the Nanaimo District Islanders at King’s Park.

To track the tournament, check http://aabcseniorgirlssoccerprovincials.weebly.com and follow the Western News for more coverage.


Just Posted

James Miller, the managing editor at the Penticton Herald, has been voted in for Jake Kimberley’s vacated council seat. (Submitted)
James Miller elected as Penticton city councillor

Penticton also voted yes to allowing up to 25 years for a Skaha Marina contract

The Eyes of the Tigers on the 2021 Beer Run on June 19. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton Beer Runners take trip around local beaches and brews

Over 160 people signed up to come back after the 2020 run was cancelled

There was high voter turnout for the first of three advance voting days for the Penticton city by-election.
Penticton city by-election general voting day is today, June 19

737 voters on June 9 in comparison to 2018 general election, which had 1,001 on first day

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 Penticton-area men charged with Kamloops brothers’ double homicide

Brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May in Naramata

(File photo)
Penticton not holding Canada Day activities out of respect for Indigenous people

Cities across B.C. are cancelling the holiday after an increased spotlight on Canada’s dark history

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Most Read