|Left: Sabrina Henry, Right: Kailen Murphy at 2011 Seneca Sting Athletics and Recreation Banquet in Apr 2011.|
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
By: Breanna Sutherland, Seneca Student Sports Reporter
“Pain is weakness leaving the body,” said Seneca Sting soccer sensation, Sabrina Henry, after the Varsity Women’s and Men’s Soccer teams hosted the Durham Lords last Wednesday night.
Heading into the matches, both teams had started their seasons strongly with identical 1-0 early regular season records. Both teams had exceptionally good seasons in 2010-2011 with the men’s soccer team winning the OCAA (Ontario Colleges Athletic Association) bronze medal and finishing undefeated with a 6-0-2 record in the regular season. The Senecan women, meanwhile, finished second in the OCAA’s Eastern Division.
Fifth-year veteran and Early Childhood Education student Sabrina Henry, last year’s recipient of the CCAA (Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association) All-Canadian, Seneca’s 2010-2011 MVP and 2009 OCAA Defensive Player of the Year Awards, expressed that this year the women’s soccer team is working hard to accomplish their ultimate goal, which is to finish first after placing second in the OCAA’s Eastern Division and fourth overall last year.
“Our team’s ultimate achievement this year will be to obviously win first in our division and to win a medal, fourth place wins no medals, and to make it to the Final,” said Henry, whose leadership, smile and laughter are well-known to her Sting team-mates.
Sabrina also expressed some of the challenges that the team faces this year.
“The biggest challenge we face as a team is coming together, because we are a new team, we try to be as close as possible, there are a lot of new players on the team with only a few players from last year returning.”
Although finding time to gel will be a challenge for the team, Sabrina also explained that this may be their key to success.
“We’ve got a few new people and they definitely add to the strength of the team, once we mesh, I think we will definitely be able to accomplish our goals.”
When asked how the best players on the team lead by example, Henry was quick to share the spotlight with her team-mates.
“We’re all the best players on the team, so we’ve all just got to do our part and step up to the plate.”
Even though the team consists of new and veteran players, they all are viewed equally by coaches and fellow players alike and are treated the same. Henry explained that the most important trait the new players will learn from the veteran players is discipline.
Last Wednesday, The Sting Women earned a 1-1 tie against the Durham Lords on home field, ending the match in second in the OCAA’s Eastern Division. The Seneca Sting Women’s Soccer team play their next home game at Seneca’s Newnham Field on Saturday, Oct. 15 at 1 p.m. vs. the Algonquin Thunder.
After Wednesday’s Women’s Varsity match, it was time for The Sting Men to face Durham at Newnham Field. The result was a rather one-sided 5-0 victory for the home-side.
Fifth-year veteran and Pre-Service Fire Fighting student, Kailen Murphy, OCAA Men's Soccer Player of the Year last season, said one of his teams keys to success in 2011-2012 is team chemistry.
“A big key to our success [this season] is coming together as a team. Chemistry is a big deal when playing soccer. If the guys on the team click with each other, you are more likely to play a better game,” said the lanky, understated Murphy.
“When we go on road trips, we all go out to dinner together. Occasionally, on the weekends, some of the guys will hang out to try to get to know everyone.”
And just like the Women’s team, the Men’s Soccer team also faces the challenge of having to integrate new players.
“Every year, the biggest challenge is the chemistry amongst players on the team, because it’s a whole new set of guys. So finding a way to get them together, to gel together, is the most difficult part and one of the ways we overcome that is having the veteran guys lead by example, by doing the best we can.”
This team of passionate young players certainly has a clear goal for itself this season that can be answered with one word: Nationals.
While every team sets its goals and objectives each season, it is admirable that for The Sting Men’s and Women’s Soccer teams, while victory is No. 1, camaraderie and team-building are not far behind.
After the dominant victory at Newnham Field over Durham, The Sting Men have a lot of momentum going into their next home game on Saturday, October 15 at 3pm vs. The Algonquin Thunder. Prizes and giveaways are available for those in attendance at the games.