RCMP and HSS soccer face-off

An exhibition game between students and the local RCMP boasts soccer moral

An exhibition game placed a combined team of HSS girls and boys against HSS grads

An exhibition game placed a combined team of HSS girls and boys against HSS grads

The Hope Secondary boys’ soccer season started off with a fun game that coach Jeremy Smith hopes will become an annual tradition. If it includes what happened before the game, that would be quite an event.

Representatives from the Mondelez food company presented Hope Secondary and Hope Minor Soccer with a cheque for $5,000.

Smith said it all started in April, during the lead-up Women’s World Cup. Mondelez was sponsoring a contest to get soccer clubs involved in a spirit-raising event called “Pride and Joy.”

“You had to register, then get as many people as you could to download an app and use it during Canada’s game against China, in Vancouver,” said Smith.

Organizations that got the most supporters to take part could win $5,000. Once the app was started on your phone or tablet, you could choose a noisemaker that generated noise through your device when you shook it.

“I took a couple of students down to the fan centre outside BC Place (on June 6) and we watched the game on the big screen and shook our phones through most of the first half,” said Smith. “You could see the $5,000 adding up on the app.”

Smith said the community really got behind the event. Hope and a soccer organization in Burnaby were the two groups in B.C. that won the top prize. There are a few areas where the money could be spent, that are still to be finalized. These areas could include uniforms for minor soccer, more equipment, or hosting tournaments in Hope. The exhibition game placed a combined team of HSS girls and boys against HSS grads, school staff and RCMP members from Hope and Boston Bar. By the end of the game, the adults had adopted the name of “Team Hodge Podge.”

Hodge Podge got on the board at six minutes, when Yvon McKay scored on a penalty kick. Rob Tumbas of the Boston Bar RCMP scored another off a volleyed cross at 18 minutes and Matt de Groot made good on a breakaway at 34 minutes, making it 3-0.

HSS Mustang, Marcus Aubin, beat RCMP keeper Adam Tallboy just before the half. Aubin had a couple of clear chances in the second half that would have made for a tight score, but he put them over the net.

McKay got his second past HSS keeper Nik Gauthier, early in the second half but Jacob Chisholm scored a beauty, 10 minutes into the half, connecting on a corner kick at knee height. Tallboy had no chance.

With just under 10 minutes to go, Constable Rob Skinner brought Hodge Podge to a 5-2 lead and the kids answered back when Dryden Hambly slammed a shot off the crossbar. It fell to the feet of Ryan Wallace for a tap-in past Tallboy.

Matt de Groot — who plays with McKay and Smith on the Valley Helicopters-sponsored Valley Choppers men’s team — unleashed a low, curling shot off the posts and in, from 25 yards out and Blake Deschenes made it a 7-3 final, when he dangled into the penalty area and scored in the final minute. Coach Smith, who played against the students, said he was pleased to see the Mustangs put three past his team.

“It’s my first year coaching the boys and they’ve been a good group to work with. The game was a good chance to get people out and to see how the boys would work. We’ve only been practicing for about two weeks.”

Silver Creek principal and Hope Minor Soccer president Bruce Becker is helping coach the team and the school’s athletics coordinator, Jason Fisher, is acting as fitness trainer. The boys started their season on the road, Tuesday, against Unity Christian.

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