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Pilots set for futsal relaunch
The Providence Pilots are about to land on the futsal court.
After a one-year hiatus, Providence will re-enter the women’s and men’s futsal divisions of the Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference, which includes teams representing Assiniboine Community College, Brandon University, Canadian Mennonite University, Red River College and l’Universite de Saint-Boniface.
Rosters are nearly finalized, and the first ball will be kicked Friday when the Pilots host the Red River College Rebels.
“Having futsal back at Providence will have a huge impact on the school and its athletes in a number of ways,” says women’s coach Tory Walker. “It will allow our soccer players to continue playing in their ‘off-season,’ and as a development tool it translates very well to the outdoor game. It also helps with team bonding as the players will have the opportunity to continue life together throughout the school year.”
With the outdoor soccer season running for less than two months, the presence of futsal will provide a value-added element for student athletes. And, as Director of Athletics Scott Masterson explains, coaches will be able to further mentor their players.
“The futsal season will give our coaches and players the opportunity to come together as a team on a regular basis,” he says. “For our coaches, it means they’ll be able to continue building relationships and challenging their players to grow in character and faith.”
On the court, Pilots fans can expect an up-tempo, exciting product.
“Futsal is high-scoring and has a lot of possession changes and counter-attacks. I think it takes the best of soccer, basketball and hockey and combines them into an exciting sport,” says Masterson.
Adds Walker: “It’s a very fast game where players with high-end skill have the opportunity to stand out.”
The 2017 MCAC futsal season will conclude over the second weekend of March when Providence hosts the provincial championships.
(Top to bottom: Julika Kehler led the Pilots women's soccer team in scoring in 2016 and is set to star on the futsal court; Tory Walker coaches the women's soccer and futsal teams.)


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