The Brock women’s soccer team clinched a playoff spot after beating Waterloo 1-0 on the road this weekend. The Badgers still had one remaining game remaining on their schedule on Sunday, in which they had the opportunity to move up one seed in the OUA.
The Badgers opponents, the Laurier Golden Hawks, occupied the fifth seed, while the Badgers held the final OUA West seed. The winner of the match would get the fifth seed, while the other would hold the sixth seed.
Sydney Sica opened the scoring for the Badgers eight minutes into the first half, assisted by Melanie Schouten. Breanna Desa scored the second goal of the afternoon after fourteen minutes assisted by Laura Kirk, giving the Badgers a 2-0 lead.
The remainder of the first half went without another goal as the Badgers were able to shut down the Golden Hawks’ offense and kept the ball out of their own end.
The Golden Hawks scored their first and only goal of the game 11 minutes into the second half. The Badgers created numerous scoring opportunities for themselves, particularly for first year defender, Arnelle Douglas who came close to scoring three times in under 10 minutes.
The Badgers one goal lead remained until Sica scored her second goal of the match assisted by Brianne Desa in the final minute of play to give the Badgers a 3-1 victory. The Badgers head to the playoffs following a 6-6-4 regular season.
Coach Kevin Trethowan was pleased, not only with this game but also with the season as a whole.
“I think it was a very successful season for us and just the way the girls have come in this season and really been working extremely hard.”
The team also celebrated their senior’s, who are set to graduate and have played their final game at Brock. However, at least one game remains on the Badgers schedule with the playoffs ahead.
They honoured a handful of seniors who will be graduating from the team: Kodi Wright, a medical science student was recognized for her speed, positivity and proficiency as a defender; Sarah Krause, in her fifth year with the team will graduate with a degree in physical education and a minor in environmental sustainability; CJ Belme, a political science major was honoured for her work ethic and motivating abilities; and forward Laura Kirk was the last to be honoured with her energy on and off the field.
It’ll be the first time in 11 seasons the Badgers have made the playoffs, following their Saturday victory against Waterloo
The excitement around breaking the streak was evident, not only in the celebrations after Sunday’s game, but also in the way that the women played. They were confident and they carried themselves like a serious contender.
“It’s unbelievable, you should have seen it, the girls reaction yesterday after the Waterloo game, screaming, and dancing and singing, it was brilliant,” said Trethowan.
After struggling in the early season, they peaked near the end and have won their last four games. The road doesn’t get easier, however, as the Badgers will head to play fourth seeded McMaster Marauders.
“We’re heading into the playoffs with four [wins] in a row, so we’re riding on a high at the moment,” said Trethowan.
Brock played McMaster twice this season, tying 2-2 and losing 2-1.
“We’re more than capable of matching [McMaster] in the playoffs, you know, it’s whichever team turns up [that day],” said Trethowan.
The Badgers set a goal for themselves at the start of the season, and that was to make the playoffs, everything from this moment on is a bonus.
“I think we’re a team that plays best when we’re calm and relaxed, and the main thing is going to be to go out there and enjoy [ourselves], soak in the occasion, and we’ll just play and hopefully we’ll get a win,” said Trethowan.
The Badgers won’t get much practice time between now and their match versus McMaster. They’ll head to Hamilton on October 24, for a 5:00 p.m. kickoff of the OUA first round.