RDC Queens soccer head coach Dave Colley has only one concern heading into the 2015 Alberta Colleges Women’s Soccer League season.
“This is the first team I’ve had that’s been all together though the training camp so they’re fit and experienced. They’re experienced and in fact even the rookies have experience.
“We have the skill and technique to be successful now it’s a matter of team chemistry. Two years ago we had that chemistry and we played well as a team. Last year it took a couple of weeks to come together. Hopefully that’s not the case this year.”
Colley has 10 players returning including keeper Lauren Good and defenders Adi Moyer, Chelsea Webster, Allyssa MacPhaden and Roxanne Unrau. However, Unrau will move up to left side in the midfield with the addition of Krysten Strand, who played the last two seasons with the University of Calgary Dinos.
Strand contacted Colley two weeks ago about joining the Queens and she is a natural to fit in as centre back, allowing Moyer, who is one of the premier defenders in the ACAC, to move to left back.
Team scoring leader Jess Whyte is also expected back, but is currently out with a knee injury.
“She will be back when she gets fitted for a new brace and she’s comfortable with it,” said Colley. “She could miss two or three weeks, but when she does return it will give us an added boost.”
Sydney Daines, who had five goals in eight games, is back up front and could be joined by U18 grad Nicole Friedl, NAIT transfer Olivia Orman or possibly Red Deer’s Kelsie Caine or Kassidy Lefteruk of Calgary.
Friedl has impressed in the preseason.
“She is very skilled, intelligent and very strong for her size,” said Colley.
Kaitlin D’Arcy, who is also one of the top players in the league, Taylor Heist and Abby Rogers return in the midfield.
Other newcomers are defender Molly Parcels of Red Deer and midfielders Laryssa Ubels and Angela Vanderburg of Red Deer. Defender Candace Chickeness of North Battleford and midfielder Kailey Turner of Cremona will red shirt.
Moira Duley, who received a coaching scholarship this year, and Katrina Loiselle will be assistant coaches.
“Moira is taking the apprenticeship program, the same thing Katrina took under Jerry (Gerling). She is very committed and I’m fortunate to have two excellent coaches to work with,” said Colley.
RDC hosts Olds Saturday and SAIT Sunday. Queens kick off at noon both days, followed by the men.
Colley expects a tough weekend.
“Olds always gives us problems and I understand their coach has done a good job recruiting. Last year we took both games off Olds and SAIT, so I’m sure they’ll be hungry,”