Royals make OCAA soccer all-star team

Four Redeemer soccer Royals – fourth-year Maddy Wynands, second-year April Passchier, second-year Dirk Van Soelen, and fourth-year Kevin Vanderleeuw – were named Ontario Colleges Athletic Association All-stars in women’s and men’s play.

Midflielder Wynands saved her best outdoor season for her last. A starter in her rookie year, Maddy grew consistently over her first three years as her talent as a center midfielder was vital to the success of the team. This past year, however, Maddy exceeded expectations and proved to be a coach’s dream player as an athlete who developed over her career and peaked for her final season.

She played her best soccer when she was relied on the most. She helped to control the offense as well as worked tirelessly defending the opposing team’s center mids. Even an injury in the final league game of the season couldn’t keep her out of the quarterfinal playoff as she had an obvious limp but played one of her best games of the year.

Passchier was named the Royals Soccer Rookie of the Year in 2009 and backed it up in 2010. She controlled the middle of the field for the Royals this season playing both in an attacking midfielder roll and defending midfielder roll depending on the game. Her ability to adapt to both gave the Royals coaching staff great confidence going into every game.

Passchier’s ability to strike the ball also made her an offensive weapon. Taking almost all free kicks as well as corners, she delivered the ball perfectly on just about every occasion. In the 10 league/exhibition games this season she scored three times from free kicks and had the opposition goalies diving to make saves on many others earning the Royals countless corners.

Passchier also won the Royals Athlete of the Month award for September.

Van Soelen played almost every minute of every game as a holding midfielder. Working tirelessly behind our offense, he often faced two opposing midfielders and shut them down. His relentless pursuits, timely and strong tackles won the Royals many turnovers in critical areas of the field.

With solid passing, Van Soelen then quarterbacked the offensive attack scoring one goal himself. A quiet and effective leader on the field, he would be an asset to any OCAA team and will be looked on to continue his strong play as the team enters the indoor season in January.

Vanderleeuw has been a stalwart on defense and played every minute of every game, contributing to the team’s 50 per cent reduction in goals against over 2009. As a defender he tied for the team lead in goal scoring with three goals.

Vanderleeuw is a threat on set plays in the opponent’s half and makes the long trip up for most opportunities. In addition he takes long free kicks and goal kicks. His timely scoring led directly to two of the team’s three wins this season. Vanderleeuw bounced back from a broken leg suffered in 2009 only to end this season with a broken knee cap. He is a warrior and will return for indoor in the winter semester.