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Wednesday, 05 November 2014 06:12

Swift Current native kicks off national soccer title quest tonight

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Kaity Letwiniuk, left and Kaylie Klaiber (an Eagle Butte grad) lead the soccer team out for a pep rally Nov. 4 at the Medicine Hat College. Kaity Letwiniuk, left and Kaylie Klaiber (an Eagle Butte grad) lead the soccer team out for a pep rally Nov. 4 at the Medicine Hat College.

Soccer couldn't possibly be more enjoyable for Swift Current’s Kaity Letwiniuk than it is right now. Well, maybe it could be even that much better...say on Nov. 8?

 

Letwiniuk is having a stellar season with the Medicine Hat Rattlers’ soccer team who are now in the midst of the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association Women’s Soccer National Championship which is being played at Medicine Hat’s Methanex Bowl from Nov. 5-8. Letwiniuk's Medicine Hat Rattlers (ranked Number 6 in the country) will open the tournament by playing the third-ranked Vancouver Island University Mariners tonight Nov. 5.
Just prior to a Nov. 4 pep rally held at the college, Letwiniuk could barely keep the smile off her face.
She says the team couldn’t wait to get out on the field and make southeast Alberta proud. While the coaches haven’t changed anything in order to not throw off any routines which have obviously worked for the 9-1 Rattlers, the former Swift Current Comp Arden star said it definitely was different.
“While our coaches have kept it at the same practice times, the same intensity, everyone is thinking more about it and it’s been hard because we’re all really looking forward to this,” she said with a smile but added, “We still had to go to class this week.”
Letwiniuk said the team wasn’t nervous, just excited about sharing a national stage and having legitimately earned their way and not just because they’re hosts.
Also in the tourney are the NAIT Ooks (1) who beat the Rattlers one-nil in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference’s championship final recently, Elans de Garneau (2), Seneca Stings (4), Ahuntsic Indiens (5), Langara Falcons (7) and the Mount Saint Vincent University Mystics (8). The Edmonton-based Ooks demolished the northern division outscoring their opposition 75-3 in their flawless 10-0 season. NAIT’s Kayla Michaels and Laura Kautz’s 26 and 15 goals respectively led the entire ACAC.
However, Letwiniuk and the Rattlers had an excellent season themselves. The five-foot seven-inch Kinesiology student has been a force all year long earning all-conference all-star honours at her forward position. Her eight goals were second on the team to teammate Kaylie Klaiber’s 10. The two Rattlers were first and second in the south division of the ACAC. Letwiniuk’s eight tallies was sixth in the nation. Her coach Jim Loughlin was the ACAC coach of the year.
She said the team hasn’t been having any mandatory film sessions and studying the other teams. She says Loughlin and the coaching staff just wanted them to worry about their own play and get an Eagle Butte grad involved offensively more.
“We don’t want to overthink anything,” Letwiniuk explained. “We’re just trying to focus on getting better ourselves and push the ball up the field faster. That means getting Kaylie Klaiber involved. We didn’t use her to our advantage in the conference final (vs. NAIT). We have to work as a unit.”
Letwiniuk says the team has an excellent chemistry and despite the fact they may get down, they always resolve to come back.
She hopes the team does well and they do have a legitimate chance of winning it all. It would be a thrill for her and her family who have travelled to all of her Medicine Hat games and even went to Edmonton last week. She is excited about it, but noted there’s always the jitters prior to such a large event.
“Nervous, but it’s a good thing.”
Watch for twitter updates @PrairiePostAlta, but also you can see the schedule of games and watch live at: http://www.sportscanada.tv/ccaa/index.php/soccer/2014wsc.

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Ryan Dahlman

Managing Editor