The Algoma Thunderbirds soccer teams will return to the pitch this weekend in their season openers against the Waterloo Warriors at Superior Heights this Saturday and Sunday.
The women will take to the field first in the doubleheader weekend against Waterloo. The red, white, and grey are under new leadership this year in Head Coach Neil Ovey. Ovey has been Head Coach of the men’s squad for five years and will now head both teams. He is joined by Assistant Coaches Mara Kremenovic, Nick Mullen, and Carlo Francella.
Seven recruits make up the 16-person squad. Rookies include Makenna Wiebe (Saskatoon, SK), Elisa South (Barrie, ON), Anna Glasgow (Saskatoon, SK), Helen Lyden (Oshawa, ON), Shyan Campbell (Maple Ridge, BC), Riley Tubaro (Windsor, ON), and Hannah Webb (Sault Ste. Marie, ON). Veteran players include Alexis Trigiani-Kirkwood (Mississauga, ON), Arianna Adams (Ajax, ON), and local student-athletes Bailie Malmloff, Sarah Van Boerdonk, Amy Francella, Hannah Marsh, Taylor Bellini, and Alexandra Berlingieri. Fourth-year Law and Justice student Kristina Richer (London, ON) has earned the honour of Captain.
The women compete at 1:00pm on Saturday and 12:00pm on Sunday.
The men’s squad consists of nine rookies and 10 returning student-athletes. Rookies include Tanner Wilden (Fort Myers, FL), Rafael Valentini (Toronto, ON), Dylan Rennie (Collingwood, ON), Yves Tambwe (Toronto,) Olawunmi Nurudeen (Nigeria), Idowu Olayemi (Nigeria), Michael Abdulateef-Adoga (Nigeria), Tanvir Grewal (Surrey, BC), and Emmanuel Aigbukor (Toronto, ON). Veteran players are Andrew Johnstone (Barrie, ON), Riley Thompson (Listowel, ON), Mohammed Alqarni (Saudi Arabia), Brandon Bangambee (Coquitlam, BC), Alexander Fera (Sault Ste. Marie), Brandon Syms (Sault Ste. Marie, ON), Caleb Charlebois (Sault Ste. Marie, ON), Suhayb Khatiri (Egypt), and Mitchell Oliverio (Sault Ste. Marie, ON). Barrie-born Ryan Marchan has been named Captain of this year’s squad.
The men take on Waterloo at 3:00pm on Saturday and 2:00pm on Sunday.
“I’m looking forward to this weekend’s games against Waterloo,” said Head Coach Neil Ovey. “Training camp went well. Our new recruits have settled in and we have a very positive environment on both teams. The squads are very focused and are ready to deal with the tasks ahead.”
The women Warriors earned two draws last weekend in their season openers against the McMaster Marauders and the Brock Badgers. The men are winless after their opening weekend.
For full rosters, schedules, and more, please visit algomathunderbirds.ca. Games are open to the public and free of charge.