Women’s soccer team break into ‘Pack history

Looking back at this season and looking forward to the next

The women’s soccer team had a productive season, from hosting the opening game in the new semester to winning against their division rivals, the Calgary Dinos.

“We are in our best season in history from the results perspective,” said Mark Pennington, head coach of TRU women’s soccer.

“It’s been a really good development [in games] in the last few years. I’ve seen [the women] come a long way. We want to keep moving forward,” Pennington said.

This year, the team finished seventh in the Canada West Pacific Division, boasting a win/loss record of 5-7-2, with 16 goals and an average of 1.5 goals per game, an increase of 20 per cent year-over-year.

“We have played some really good soccer. Some of the results haven’t gone the way that we hoped,” Pennington said. “At this level, you’re always in a state of transition.”

The Kamloops-born forward Emily Clark has been a member of the WolfPack for the last four seasons and has earned one of the leading positions on the team this year with two goals and two assists.

“The last two years were highlights for me,” Clark said.

Overall, Clark — who was named an Academic All-Canadian by U Sports — has scored 10 goals in her career at TRU, while earning at least one assist in almost every game.

“You have seniors going out every year,” Pennington said. 

As Clark rounds out her final season, many ‘Pack newcomers are finishing their first. Among them is Lillie Pearson from Sherwood Park, Alberta. 

“[This year] I was definitely in an adaptation stage from high school level to university level. I felt like I clicked right away with the girls,” Pearson said. “With our team, we all get along the same and we don’t have those groups that exclude anyone. With high school soccer, you get groups of girls and they’re clingy.” 

Indeed, looking at the women’s soccer team one might sense a shared feeling of sisterhood. The seniors share their knowledge with the rookies and nobody feels excluded. 

Perhaps it was that very feeling of sisterhood that propelled the ‘Pack to a recent victory when, for the first time in the history of the program, the women’s team scored a win over the Calgary Dinos, 2-1 in regulation play. Pearson mentioned that game being one of the highlights of the season.

“Beating Calgary for the first time in program history was definitely memorable. We really played together as a team. Won that game all together,” Pearson said.