When the UNBC Timberwolves women’s soccer team hits the pitch in West Division action of U sports next fall, they do so wanting to control the tempo of games.
That’s the identity second-year coach Neil Sedgwick is after. He believes he’s added a piece that will make that happen with Pinnacles FC Excelsior Academy product Kyra Wallace, who caught his attention very quickly during a prospect identification camp last fall.
On the Timberwolves website, Sedgwick said Kyra “was impressive from her first touch of the first day.” Sedgwick likes Wallace’s ability to handle the ball and said that is an important factor within establishing that identity.
“She’s an exceptionally technical player. Physically will match up well in the conference,” said Sedgwick, whose Timberwolves finished with 12 losses and a tie last year. “Technically I think she will come in and she will be able to contribute straight away with that technical ability and her understanding of the game.”
Wallace likes to attack and has put in the effort working on her touch.
“I like to have a good first touch. I hope I can help on the attacking part of the game as well as defending,” said Wallace. “There is a little bit of nerves. I feel pretty confident. The transition won’t be too hard because I have already got to play with them a little bit.”
Sedgwick sees Wallace, a midfielder, making a smooth transition because she possesses the tools.
“We never know exactly how a first-year player is going to adapt to the speed and physicality of top level of Canadian college soccer,” he added. “She has shown us in our training environment here that she can compete well and she does exceptionally well with the concepts that we’ve asked of her.”
Wallace credits the Pinnacles FC coaches, especially Ezra Cremers for helping her reach this level, which she wasn’t sure she was capable of. Wallace said the program Cremers has built is “crazy good” while being very technical.
“I think that is the reason I consider myself technical now. Because of all the work he put in to the program,” she said.
Wallace looks forward to the next chapter of her soccer.
“It’s really exciting because I have been playing ever since I was little. I always thought it would be so cool to keep on playing,” said Wallace, a product of Pinnacles FC. “I wasn’t sure if I actually would be able to.”
Soccer has always been a part of her life and she enjoys being on a team.
The Timberwolves weren’t the only team interested as there was a university in Saskatchewan that liked Wallace, but it never got as far as her making a visit.
“Once I went to Prince George I made my decision. I decided to sign with them because I really liked it there,” said Wallace, who fell in love with the northern scenery and atmosphere. “It just seemed like a good environment. I saw that I could call that place home. It felt really welcoming. I just felt good all around.”
Wallace will be joining Kylie Erb, another Penticton product, who Wallace is familiar with. The two have played together in the past when Wallace played up in age groups for tournaments. Wallace said having that familiar face will be good.
For now, Wallace looks forward to her final season with Pinnacles FC and hopes for the chance to win her first provincial medal.