It’s been a long time since Jaclyn Dunnett was in Penticton for soccer.
Yet the 28-year-old former Canadian national team member remembers those games with fondness.
“Always had a lot of fun,” said Dunnett, back in Penticton while trying to land a job as a teacher. “It was competitive.”
Dunnett, whose playing resume also included winning the W-League championship with Whitecaps FC, UBC and the Vancouver Women’s Premier League, worked with players in the club last Saturday and earlier this week. It gave her a chance to learn about the club and see the players.
“They are doing some great stuff from what I’ve seen in a short while,” said Dunnett, a Burnaby product. “The young coaches that were out there, worked well with the little ones.”
She had a good experience with the players and coaches.
“I’m excited to continue on,” she said.
When Dunnett talks to the players about what she has accomplished and who she has played with, they stick to her every word.
“As soon as I say that I’ve played with Christine (Sinclaire) … their mouths drop. It’s pretty funny,” said Dunnett. “Especially the boys I find, if you have a playing background like that, they kind of tend to grab on to more of what you are saying.”
PFC U13 players Shanelle Mcivor and Shea Coutts were impressed.
“It is so awesome to have her coach us,” said Mcivor. “She is a really good inspiration and role model.”
The coaching Mcivor as received with PFC has helped her learn a lot.
“I have improved so much it is amazing,” she said.
Coutts shared the biggest thing she learned from Dunnett.
“Always at practices to put all your effort in and if you do that then you will improve in your games,” she said.
“It’s really cool because she was going to quit soccer at one point and she decided to be a goalie then kept on moving up from there,” said continued. “She has even played with Christine Sinclair. She shows us how far you can really go in soccer.”
Among the things that Coutts learned were possession techniques like how to move and when to move.
“She just put it all together for us so it makes sense,” added Coutts.
PFC executive director and head coach Ezra Cremers said it’s exciting to have someone like Dunnett. He hopes that she can stay.
“It would definitely help the soccer community,” he said, adding that the community needs to find ways to keep young people. “She has been fantastic for our females and a role model.”