The Clearwater Secondary School (CSS) girls soccer team is in need of a helping hand after an unexpected win that’s sending them to provincials.
“The situation is we need about $7,500; we didn’t expect to go to provincials,” said Ian Eakins, who’s been a soccer coach at CSS for 17 years.
“The girls have exceeded all expectations and our soccer budget from Clearwater Secondary School was already done at our zones.”
Eakins added every year the team ‘s goal is just to make it to the zone level, and this is the first time the expectation has been exceeded.
Using grit, hustle, and determination, CSS has managed to beat some other B.C. teams that are more practiced and appear regularly at provincials, he said.
“They grind out these hard gritty wins—soccer is called the ‘beautiful game,’ well this ain’t,” said Eakins with a laugh.
“But a win is a win, so we’ll take it and I think the other thing is our defense has been phenomenal; my philosophy is it’s not the team that scores the most goals that wins the game, it’s the team the lets in the fewest.”
The game that determined CSS’s spot at provincials happened about a week ago in Vernon when the Clearwater team beat Osoyoos at a shootout, another aspect of the game Eakins said CSS has been having luck with this season.
“Our shootouts have been really good—a lot of these games come down to shootouts and we’ve excelled at them,” he said.
“And we have an excellent goalie this year who’s really made a difference, Sierra Gallagher, so we’ve kept all the games very close; we always have a chance and we have a lot of speed up front, which is good.”
Many residents and businesses in Clearwater have begun stepping up to pitch in and send the team to the next level and a bottle drive and carwash have been organized to help make the balance of funds needed.
Those looking to help can check out the carwash/bottle drive at CSS on May 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“Clearwater is a really great community,” said Eakins. “There’s an old saying that says it takes a village to raise a child, and I think Clearwater always steps up to bat.”