After cruising to an undefeated regular season, the Princess Margaret Mustangs girls soccer squad ran into some tough competition at the Okanagan championships.
Grade 12 player Yolanda George said the competition at the tournament was a lot higher calibre than they faced throughout the season.
Still she thought her team, which finished fifth overall, played well during the tournament that was held on Tuesday and Wednesday at King’s Park in Penticton.
“I think we talked to each other really well and our passing was really strong,” said George.
Grade 11 teammate Kari Pym agreed, and said the team will take a lot of experience back for next season.
“Even though we lost most of our games here it was good to play against better teams that we had to put more of an effort into which will help us get stronger for next year,” said Pym.
The growth in the Mustangs is evident in how collected they kept in the team’s final match. The Mustangs won the game 1-0 over Westsyde Whundas in sudden death overtime. Pym had the opportunity to end the game off a nice pass, but her shot sailed just wide of the goalpost.
The Mustangs rallied their second efforts on getting control of the ball to net the game-winner. The play was whistled down just to the left of the goal and Jessie Olfert punted the ball over a wall of Whundas players, placing it perfectly in front of the net where Taylor Corrie snuck it past the keeper.
Corrie also scored the Mustangs only goal in the tournament opener, which they lost 3-1 to the Sa-Hali Sabres.
The Mustangs bounced back for their second match, defeating Revelstoke Rams 3-1 with goals from Corrie, Nicole Mann and Olfert.
In a stingy defensive match, the Mustangs lost 1-0 to Okanagan Mission Huskies on Wednesday morning to set up them up for their final game against the Whundas.
“We have a very young team and I though they all played very well this season,” said Mustangs coach Terry Olfert, who is a hockey coach and has never taken the reigns on the soccer pitch before. “They worked really hard on their passing this year and they had great communication in the group which includes Grade 9 up to Grade 12 players. They worked well as a team and I think that is what made it a really fun year.”
The Sa-Hali Sabres, Kalamalka Lakers and Valleyview Vikings all earned berths to the provincial championship.
Pen High Lakers Soccer
The Pen High Lakers girls soccer team also lost their shot at qualifying for the AAA provincials.
The Lakers played in the quarter-final game on their home turf last week, defeating Salmon Arm 3-1 and pushing them into the semifinals on Wednesday.
The semifinals turned out to be a tight match against Mt. Boucherie that was well played by the Lakers.
The defensive battle ended with the Lakers losing 1-0.