Chelsea Hall is supported by Emily Weeks as she moves the ball ahead during a match against Qualicum at Forrest Field Saturday.

Soccer kicks into high gear

Wrap-up of the local youth soccer teams in Ladysmith and area

Ladysmith’s youth soccer teams are kicking into high gear, with many of the local teams in the top rankings of their leagues.

The following is a round-up of how the season is unfolding.

The U-15 49ers (Ladysmith) girls have slipped to third place,  but they’re not letting that get them down.

The 49ers played the Oceanside Stormers Saturday, November 19, for a 1-1 tie.

“The team play is coming along and they’re starting to communicate better,” said 49ers coach John Battie.

The 49ers will hit the road next weekend for a game against Gabriola Island.

The U-15 Hurricanes (Cedar) Girls remain perfect at 7-0 and have gained sole possession of first place in their league.

The U-15 Spartans (Ladysmith) boys team have won three games in a row to move up to fourth in their league.

“We got off to a slow start this season, but our defense has really solidified and we’re starting to score more goals,” said coach Rob Griffin.

“We’ve got a couple of upcoming games that will really tell us how we stack up in this league, and I’m confident that we’ll hold our own.”

Team leading scorer David Rankin has seven goals and four assists in seven games played, in his first year as a striker (he was a goalkeeper last year).

“David was a solid force for us as a goalkeeper last year. Any time you have a six-foot-tall 13-year-old, you want him in net, and he was instrumental in our team winning the Championship tournament,” Griffin said.

“But David wanted to try the striker position this season, and the move has paid off – he’s averaging a goal a game, he’s got a lethal kick, and with four assists to go with his seven goals, he’s turning into a real playmaker.”

The Spartans played against Nanaimo at Forrest Field on November 19 and scored a 3-0 victory.

The U-18 Blue Lightning (Ladysmith) girls have won five of their last six games (including the last three in a row by a combined score of 13-4), to move into a tie for second in their league.

The U-13 Avalanche (Ladysmith) Girls are undefeated in their last six games, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 13-5, and hold second spot in their league.

The Avalanche played the Nanaimo Nightmare, the league’s number one team at the Turf field Saturday, November 19 and came away with a 1-1 tie.

“It was a good game, a lot of back and forth, their team is really strong,” said coach Kathleen Nicholls.

At half time the game was scoreless, until Nanaimo scored the first goal early in the second half.

But Ladysmith’s Georgia Nicholls scored in the last three minutes to tie up the game.

The Avalanche’s next game will take place in Qualicum Saturday, November 26.

Watch for the Mid-Isle Soccer ‘Blue Army’ to appear at this year’s Light-Up parade, featuring hundreds of marching blue-jerseyed players.

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