The Pipers celebrate their silver medals at the AAA girls provincial tournament in Kelowna on June 3. | Courtesy of Darren Rath
By Nick Laba, North Shore News.
A stellar post-season almost took them all the way.
But the senior girls soccer team at Ecole Argyle Secondary fell just one game short of the provincial AAA title. The Pipers lost 2-1 to the Centennial Centaurs in the finals on Saturday (June 3) in Kelowna.
After finishing the regular season in third place on the North Shore, Argyle upped their game to finish first in the local playoffs. The Pipers then went on to top the Vancouver Sea to Sky Zone playoffs as well, beating rivals Handsworth in the semis and Lord Byng in the finals.
Through the provincials, the Pipers’ strong performance continued, squashing Tamanawis and Oak Bay in their first two games at the tourney. A tight match against Mt. Boucherie went to penalty kicks. All the Argyle strikers scored, and star goalkeeper Myleah Brown made a stop that sent the Pipers to the semi final against South Delta, where they won 2-0.
Ultimately, they would face Centennial in the finals, which has won the championship three times since 2018 (2020 and 2021 were cancelled).
Argyle coach Darren Rath said Centennial is a good, experienced team with many players in the BC Soccer Premier League.
“More than half the players on our team are in Grade 9 and 10,” he said. “So in a lot of ways we had a junior team playing against senior teams.”
“We defended really well as a team and kept it close all the way through. But in the end, we fell short to a very good team,” he added. “I’m extremely pleased with how our girls performed. They battled hard they left everything on the pitch.”
At the end of the tourney, team captain Ayesha Fraser earned a Provincial Championships Commissioner XVI Award, given to the MVP of each team. And Brown was named the top goalkeeper in the tournament.
But to make it to the finals, you need to have every player buying into the full team system, Rath said.
“Every single player is equally important regardless of what their individual role is – you need to have that depth.”