It is the tip of the iceberg for the TRU soccer program as we reach the halfway point of the season for both men and women’s teams. It has not been the easiest of rides for either side as both teams are currently in a dog fight for playoffs.
The men’s team is sitting at 2 wins, 3 losses and 4 ties; they are at the bottom of the table, 5 points away from a playoff spot. The women’s team are at 1 win, 4 losses and 2 ties; they find themselves second to the last place, and 4 points away from a playoff spot. This is not ideal for either team, but they are aware of the difficulty of the league and know that every result can turn the standings on its head.
“Coming into the season, our expectations were high, and we have definitely been humbled,” Jan Pirettas, captain of the men’s team proclaims. “Obviously, however, we are not where we want to be, especially considering the huge amount of talent we have in our squad. There are a lot of new players and we are still working on finding our own style of play and identity.”
The men’s team has been here before; last year they were bottom of the table with 4 games left. Postseason seemed like a far-reach, but the team fought hard on a four-game win streak, capped off with a win against the undefeated University of British Columbia, only nearly sneak into playoffs by the skin of their teeth.
“I am feeling very positive moving forward into the second half of the year. There are a lot of games left and we are still very focused on a playoff spot.” Pirettas said.
The men’s team still has 6 games left to turn their playoffs dreams into reality.
On the other hand, Natalie Verdiel, captain of the women’s team recounts: “I think we have definitely come a long way – it’s still a learning process of course, but we have more fight as a team.” Feeling hopeful about the remaining season, Verdiel continues, “we need to get some points if we want to make playoffs. Playoffs were one of the goals that we had set for ourselves this year. I think the second half of the season will be about getting results.”
It goes without saying that both teams have a tall task of trying to break through to playoffs; however, the searing levels of confidence and determination of both teams run parallel to that challenge laying ahead.
Catch both teams next weekend as they look to change to winning ways. The women’s team kicks off against University of British Columbia, at Hillside Stadium, at 12:00 p.m. The men’s team also plays UBCO directly following the women’s game at 2:00 p.m.