HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

With Dave Makela

 

For Release: April 13th, 2000

 

The story of high school soccer's enormous popularity continues.

Five years ago, the total number of girls' and boys' spring high school soccer teams reached twenty teams. Last year, the number swelled to thirty-seven. This year? Well this year the number is thirty-eight. The number has almost doubled in six years!

Here's how this number breaks down: the Junior boys' loop, contested in the Fall, came in at nine teams. The Girls' Open loop, separated into two divisions, will enter a total of sixteen teams, while the Senior Boys' group, also separated into two divisions, will total thirteen teams.

Of the sixteen girls' entries, ten will participate in the A/AA division, with the remaining six in AAA, while the boys' divisions are comprised of seven A/AA entries and six AAA entries.

 

COMPETITION WILL BE FIERCE

Spring League Co-Convener Peter Vigna of Lasalle Secondary School anticipates an extremely competitive league this year: "This year is unlike many others I've been involved with in that there really aren't any clear cut favourites going in. We can certainly narrow the field down to three or four teams in each division, but after that I wouldn't even want to speculate. As a participant, I would think each and every game in the season would be interesting and challenging."

No question. The season is short, very short in fact, with only four weeks to contest a total of 111 regular season games. After that, Victoria Day weekend becomes a factor requiring back-to-back playoff games the following week, with semi finals on May 23rd followed by finals on May 24th. Just two days after that it's N.O.S.S.A. Soccer Friday, May 26th at Lily Creek completing an extremely hectic and important week of high school soccer.

 

SCHEDULING PROCESS DIFFICULT

The short season poses quite a challenge for scheduling, according to Vigna's counterpart Glen Chappell, also of Lasalle: "Including last year's effort, we have put in a combined total of forty-two hours trying to figure out a regular season schedule that attempts to take into consideration school conflict dates due to graduation commencements, other coaching commitments, tournaments, other sport championship dates and a host of other factors during an extremely busy time of the school calendar. Although one of the shortest seasons in the S.D.S.S.A.A., this schedule can give one fits trying to fit in all the pieces to the puzzle."

Glen adds that a late Easter Weekend added a little twist to this year's schedule as well.

League coaches met last night at Lasalle to put the finishing touches on the schedule, with opening day for all divisions slated for Tuesday, April 25th.

 

O.F.S.A.A. CHAMPIONSHIPS SLATED FOR JUNE 1st-3rd

Following the N.O.S.S.A. championships on May 26th, O.F.S.A.A. is next on the championship calendar beginning June 1st in each of the competitive divisions, with host cities as follows:

Girls' AAA - Sudbury

Girls' A/AA - Fort Frances

Boys' AAA - Ottawa

Boys' A/AA - Timmins

 

The Confederation Chargers are the defending girls' and boys' A/AA champions, while Marymount will be defending their AAA girls' title and St. Charles the AAA boys' title. Notre Dame will represent the S.D.S.S.A.A. at the Junior boys' N.O.S.S.A. Championship.

 


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