Terrace U18 soccer girls earned third in the top tier division at the Kamloops Slurpee Cup early in May.
Coach Sean Bujtas said the team has been quite successful at the tournament previously and won their division last year, so he decided to kick things up a level and challenge them to play in the top tier division.
First they faced Kamloops who has won the provincial ‘A’ cup twice and start their season early. Bujtas said it was Terrace’s first game and they were “shaking off some rust.” They lost 3-0.
Second they played Delta, blazing onto the field hard and scoring the first goal early on. New Terrace player Chantal Gammie sent a pass through to left striker Jenna Hoornenborg who drilled through two defenders and fired it back into the middle to Paige Payne who scored.
Delta responded with a goal two minutes later, and another one near the end of the first half to earn a 2-1 lead. Terrace kept fighting, but the score stayed steady for the rest of the first and most of the second half.
But with five minutes left, Terrace got a corner kick and after a few passes, got the ball to defender Jewel Hall who scored to tie the game 2-2.
Third, Terrace faced Nelson, who scored early on, but minutes later attacking midfielder Paige Payne took advantage of a poor Nelson goal kick and sent the ball into the back of the net, tying up the score 1-1.
Nelson scored again shortly after, and a third time at the end of the half when Terrace took a penalty. That put Terrace down 1-3.
In the dying minutes of that half, Payne shot the ball off a corner kick which rebounded off the Nelson goalie and Hoornenborg fired it in, rounding off the first half at 2-3.
Terrace went into the second half “mad and ready to play,” and they dominated for the next 30 minutes, Bujtas said.
The Nelson goaltender held off their strong forward push for most of the period, where the ball stayed on the Nelson half of the field for longer than two thirds of the time.
Then with three minutes left in the game, outside midfielder Robin Price, a new Terrace player from Smithers, took the ball down the wing and sent in a perfect pass to striker Hoornenborg who scored.
The game ended 3-3.
Last, Terrace played Calgary. They played an even back and forth game and Terrace scored the only goal in the first half.
In the second, Terrace “found their form,” scoring two more nearly back to back. Calgary earned one goal shortly after to make it 3-1, but then Terrace went on a run. Jewel Hall, Chantal Gammie and Jenna Hoornenborg all landed a goal, earning a 6-1 lead to wrap up the game.
Besides the strong forward pressure, Bujtas said the strong defensive line
of Emma Kenmuir, Ashlee Wojnarowski, Anke de Wit, Jewel Hall and goal keeper Alex Bujtas “refused to let anything past them.”
Terrace finished third in the Kamloops tournament, which is their eighth and final time competing there as most of the team is graduating. They will play provincials in Penticton on July 7-10.