Catherine Toop (in green) bumps with a Yale Lion defender during a mid-season game at Sardis secondary, with Kalista Kirkness in the background. Toop’s Falcons dive into provincial play next week as one of 16 teams in the AAA championship field.

Sardis Falcons taking seat among B.C. girls soccer elite

The Falcons are one of 16 teams in the field for next week’s AAA provincials in Burnaby.

The Sardis Falcons are flying high heading into next week’s AAA high school soccer provincials.

Sardis joins a 16 team field in the year end tournament that runs Wednesday through Friday at the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex.

The Falcons have enjoyed a near-flawless season, suffering just two losses in 19 league, tournament and playoff matches.

Sardis rolled through the regular season with a 14-1 record, going 6-0 against Fraser Valley East foes with 25 goals for and just two against.

The Falcons won the W.J. Mouat tournament.

In Valleys Sardis started with a 2-1 overtime win over Elgin Park (Surrey) followed by a 2-1 penalty-kicks win over South Delta. Falcons goaltender Makena Lejeune made several clutch saves to keep her team in the hunt, and recorded a clean-sheet in the third Sardis win, a 4-0 shutout of Charles Best (Coquitlam).

The Falcons were topped 2-0 by Panorama Ridge (Surrey) in the Fraser Valley final, but their second place finish still stands as the highest in school history.

It should be no surprise that the Falcons are doing so well. A loaded roster includes 10 Premier League players, six Metro players and four gold level players.

Coach Richard Tagle says their team has been bolstered by the presence of the school’s ‘Soccer for Life’ program, a phys-ed offering that provides hours of on-and-off the pitch training in the school setting.

“The community plays a large role in the development of our players,” Tagle said. “But with the Soccer for Life program we are able to be in the elite of B.C. high school soccer.”

Meghan Rose leads the Sardis offence and sets the tone with tough, physical play. Mackenzie Silbernagel, a junior, has been a key contributor along with Yasmina Enneddam, Bethany Friesen and rookies Katie Lampen, Carmen Bonnar and Amber Feaver.

Tagle feels good about his team’s chances at provincials.

“I believe that the Fraser Valley Championship is a more difficult tournament to win, and having placed second makes me think we have an outstanding chance of reaching the top four at provincials, if not winning it all,” the coach noted.

The provincial field includes Clayton Heights (Surrey), South Delta, Lord Byng (Vancouver), Fleetwood Park (Surrey), Charles Best, Kitsilano (Vancouver), Reynolds (Victoria), Kelowna, Centennial (Coquitlam), Handsworth (North Vancouver), Carihi (Campbell River), McMath (Richmond), North Peace (Fort St. John), Panorama Ridge and Burnaby North.

See aaagirlssoccer2017.tk for provincial schedules and scores.