Princess Alexandra, Ecole Boreale, and Diamond Jenness Secondary School students participated in the Ernie’s Rock- Around- the -Clock Indoor Soccer Tournament in Grand Prairie demonstrating great soccer spirit and bringing home impressive results.
There were students that ranged from 12 to 18 years of age that made the long 8-hour trip to Grand Prairie to play at a college complex in a soccer tournament. The tournament which featured soccer teams from British Columbia, Alberta and the NWT played the game at all hours whether day or night.
Coral Helmer, coach of the Grade 7 Boys who finished second in the competition, said, “the tournament was really fun for the kids and the kids really improved over the weekend since they were playing against really good competition like the Grand Prairie soccer team.
One of the soccer games that PA Predators played was at 11:30 p.m. at night on May 1 and they won that game 8-0 against the Manning Kickers. Also, the U13 PA Predators girls soccer team did well grabbing third place in their division. “PA has been participating for the last four years and it is a tournament that we look forward to participating in every year,” said Tara Boudreau, PA U 13 Girls coach.
However, PA wasn’t the only team participating in a soccer tournament in Grand Prairie, as Ecole Boreale sent a U 11 mixed team which captured third place out of eight teams and the U 15 girls team got fourth place.
As well, DJSS sent their Junior Girls and Boys teams along with their Senior Boys and Girls soccer teams down to compete in the Grand Prairie tournament. According to Kelly Webster, the Gym teacher at DJSS, the tournament was more competitive since it had more teams participating. The U 15 girls team finished in fifth place in their eight team division and the Junior Boys placed at the bottom of their division.
However, Webster said the teams were only playing a round robin format and had no playoff round so they were seeded based on those results. “They played so well and your placement doesn’t always reflect how you did”.
Further, the Senior Girls were on the losing end of a tight contested soccer match losing 3-2 in the Bronze Medal match. As well, the Senior Boys lost a close match to the host Grand Prairie team 5-4.
Webster felt that the key to their Senior teams success is that the arena soccer tends to be a good fit for the soccer players because they tend to be in good shape. She attributed the success of the DJS Senior soccer teams to the fact that the Elementary Schools such as PA and Ecole Boreale start getting their students to participate in soccer at a young age. “It was the most unified team spirit we have had since the tournament was around the clock,” said Webster.
The soccer teams that went to the tournament can say thank you to the Hay River Elks Club and the Mackenize Hay River Recreation Association for their continued support. They provided funding for the all the Hay River soccer teams traveling to Grand Prairie, Ala. for the soccer tournaments and towards helping the students participate in the sport.