Stevenson’s first MCAC goal represents four years of growth at PUC

In her final game with the Providence University College Pilots women’s soccer team, Rebekah Stevenson scored her first goal – a goal that represents her time and growth with the team.

“That was just the best feeling in the world. It was like the peak of everything, it was so cool because most of the girls have been playing with me for two, three years and they’ve seen me grow as a player and improve my soccer skills,” said Stevenson.

“It was cool to be a part of that and feel celebrated by all my team, by my coaches, it was cool because everyone has seen me grow in so many ways. Even some of the girls will be like, ‘I never celebrated so hard for a goal.’”

Stevenson’s growth at PUC was impressive because she had never played soccer before joining the team. She saw a poster in the hallway at school promoting soccer try outs and thought she would give it a shot because it would be a good way to meet people at her new school. She moved from Alberta to Winnipeg to take courses at the University of Manitoba before transferring to PUC.

“I literally showed up to soccer practice, like the tryout, in runners – I didn’t even have cleats yet,” she said with a laugh. “I really, really did dedicate time in trying to improve and anyone that saw me four years ago would say its night and day. You wouldn’t have expected it because of how much I’ve grown in my soccer skills.”

Pilots head coach, Tory Walker, says he didn’t have big expectations when Stevenson first joined the team, but her work ethic amazed him and her teammates.

“Over the past four seasons I have seen her grow into a really good soccer player,” said Walker. “Her first year, I found it difficult to even find her playing time, but this past year in her final season, she had developed so much that she challenged her teammates for a starting position.”

Stevenson says the athletic department at Providence builds a community between all of the teams at the school and she enjoyed the sense of community. She adds she enjoyed her time with the Pilots and plans to play in a league in Steinbach this year.

“I fell in love with soccer, so there’s no way I’m giving that up,” she said.

When Stevenson wasn’t on the pitch she was in the classroom. She is graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and hopes to make a difference when she joins the workforce.

“I am hoping to get a job with Child and Family Services or some kind of youth shelter programming. I would love to do that,” she said. “I’ve always liked working with people, especially youth and it’s something I’m passionate about and I also really, really like to help people.”

Walker says Stevenson is a genuine person who loves and cares for her team. He adds she was a difference maker for the Pilots and she will be a difference maker in the world.

2020 MCAC Soccer Schedules Released

The men and women soccer seasons will kick off on Sept. 13

The 2020 MCAC soccer season will kick off on Sunday, Sept. 13 which includes a women’s soccer championship rematch between the defending champions, Université de Saint-Boniface Les Rouges, and the Providence University College Pilots. The complete men’s and women’s soccer schedules can be found on our website.

“The MCAC has made the decision to move forward with the 2020 soccer season as all facets of our decision-making framework and guiding principles have been met,” said Scott Masterson, MCAC President. “We are excited to be able to offer our MCAC soccer athletes with an opportunity to compete as we are one of the only conferences in Canada, at both the U SPORTS and CCAA level, that is able to do so.”

Masterson added the MCAC is committed to the safety of all participants and the league will be using the MSA’s Return to Play protocols and “Match Guidelines for Teams and Referees” throughout the season.

Opening Weekend

On Sunday, Sept. 13 the BU Bobcats host the CMU Blazers, while the USB Les Rouges play the PUC Pilots. The ACC Cougars aren’t in action during opening weekend and begin their season on Saturday, Sept. 19 in Brandon.

Game Times

This season, the women kick off their games at 1 p.m. followed by the men at 3:15 p.m. The playoffs will continue this pattern, but there could be different start times. One exception to these times during the regular season is on Sunday, Sept. 20 when the ACC Cougars play the CMU Blazers — women start at 3:15 p.m. followed by the men at 5:30 p.m.

Championship Rematches

USB Les Rouges look to defend their 2019 title and open their season against the PUC Pilots, who they beat 2-0 in last season’s final game. On Saturday, Sept. 26 the PUC Pilots men’s soccer team will look for revenge as they play the BU Bobcats for the first time since losing the 2019 championship match 3-2.

2020 MCAC Soccer Championships

The 2020 soccer championships are being hosted by Brandon University on October 31 and November 1, 2020. 

The MCAC is committed to the 2020 soccer season assuming their principles of safety for all involved, student-athlete experience and fiscal responsibility can be met, along with their three conditions that need to be met to allow the full regular season to take place:

  • All Provincial and Municipal Health restrictions around travel can be realistically followed.
  • All Provincial and Municipal Health restrictions around social distancing can be respected in the context of sport participation and competition.
  • Provincial Sport Organization’s Return-to-Play phase allows for full sport training and competition.

2020 MCAC Soccer Season Set to Kickoff Under New Return to Play Framework

News Release

Winnipeg, MBJune 16, 2020– The 2020 Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference’s men’s and women’s soccer seasons will be played provided the league can meet all guidelines under their new “Return to Play Framework.”

“In light of the positive improvements in Manitoba surrounding COVID-19 and the movement towards Phase three by the Manitoba government, the MCAC has a sense of hope that the 2020-2021 regular seasons will be able to proceed,” said Scott Masterson, MCAC president.

Due to COVID-19, the MCAC has created a “Return to Play Framework” to help determine whether they will play the 2020-21 regular season in the league’s four sports. The framework has three guiding principles: safety of all involved, student-athlete experience and fiscal responsibility.

The goal of this new framework is to be a reference for decision making during this time, meaning there are conditions that need to be met. All provincial and municipal health restrictions around travel must be able to be followed, social distancing must be respected in the context of sport participation and competition, and guidelines must allow for full training and competition to take place.

“We have created this framework to assist in our decision-making process and felt it was necessary to announce our intent to offer regular season competition for our student-athletes, as long as it fits within our guiding principles,” said Masterson. “The safety of our student-athletes will remain at the forefront of our decision-making process.”

The MCAC is made up of five schools throughout Manitoba and return to play is possible because there is no cross-province travel needed.

With the province heading towards phase three of re-opening, the Assiniboine Community College, Brandon University, Canadian Mennonite University, Providence University College and Université de Saint-Boniface have all committed to playing in the 2020 MCAC soccer season. 

A formal decision-making timeline and contingency plan will be released later this June.

About the MCAC

The MCAC is the governing body for intercollegiate athletics in Manitoba. Its mission is to foster the development of the student-athlete through the administration and promotion of intercollegiate athletics as part of the education experience and provide a leadership role in the development of sport in Manitoba.

MCAC student athletes compete in basketball, futsal, soccer and volleyball. Member institutions include Assiniboine Community College (Brandon), Brandon University (Brandon), Canadian Mennonite University (Winnipeg), Providence University College (Otterburne) and Université de Sainte-Boniface (Winnipeg).

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For more information, please contact:

Kellen Taniguchi

Communications Coordinator

mcacnews@gmail.com