Academy Centre Players of the Month

Academy Centre Players of the Month - March

Whitecaps FC Academy Centres are a network of regional training hubs linked through key staff, curriculum, and standards that provide professional supplemental club training for serious, motivated players. Whitecaps FC currently have a network from coast to coast, including locations in Kamloops, the Kootenays, Manitoba, Northern BC, the Okanagan, Squamish, Vancouver, and Vancouver Island, as well as in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Prince Edward Island. For more information, visit and select the academy in your region.

Below are the Whitecaps FC Academy Centre Players of the Month for March 2018.

Alberta Academy Centre
Name: Kirstin Davey
Birth Year: 2006
Hometown: Lethbridge
What his coach says: “Kirstin’s comfortability on the ball was noticeable from the first practice, but what has become even more apparent as the phase has progressed is the dedication to mastery and willingness to compete. She regularly wins any 1v1 tournaments we have during practice, and she has a competitive streak that you wouldn’t expect from her quiet and respectful personality. As the sessions have gone on, she has become more comfortable but has continued to push herself in every practice and is a perfect example of the type of training attitude that we look for in every player. Congratulations on this well deserved award." 
Name: Kaden Lopez
Birth Year: 2006
Hometown: Springbank
What his coach says: “Kaden has shown the “dedication to mastery” which we have been looking for in all players in the program. The one thing that is in the players control is their EAR (Effort, Attitude, Response to adversity) and Kaden has been tremendous in these respects in every single practice that he has attended. He sets the example within the group and has seen incremental improvements in his player habits in every practice. I look forward to seeing Kaden progress during phase two of the program and congratulations on this recognition."

Fraser Valley Academy Centre 

Name: Mila Demers
Hometown: Abbotsford
Birth Year: 2008
What her coaches say: “Mila is only new to the program, but from the moment she arrived her confidence and character has been fantastic. She is really comfortable with the ball at her feet, works incredibly hard, and always lights up the group with her bubbly personality. She has a great training mentality and great skills to boot. We look forward to working with Mila, and realizing her bright potential.”
Name: Anthony Nicholson
Birth Year: 2007
What his coaches say: "Anthony is a dream to coach. His application, attitude, and thirst to learn should inspire the group. Anthony possesses a plethora of skills that he uses to draw defenders in and then evade with a trick or a clever pass. He is able to play on both feet, which works to his advantage in game situations as he can dribble, pass, and shoot on either side. Keep up the great work Anthony, and a huge well done from the coaches."

Kootenay East Academy Centre

Name: Piper Whelan
Birth Year: 2004
Hometown: Fernie
What her coaches say: "Pip has been an outstanding player in the Kootenay region for some time now. She gives everything at every training session and leads the players around her into giving their best also. Being with the academy for nearly four years now, Piper and family travel into the Academy from Fernie each week. She makes the three-hour drive totally worthwhile by executing excellent practices as she continues to develop into a real player to watch for the future. As someone that has seen Piper grow over her time in the Kootenay Academy, I am now, more than ever, excited to see her transfer her skills and leadership that has really risen over the past few weeks on to the outdoor fields this spring and summer. Congrats Pip, it has been a privilege to work with you and see your talents grow."
Name: Paul-Alexander Chong
Birth Year: 2004
Hometown: Cranbrook
What his coaches say: "Paul has been with the program for three years now and has improved phase upon phase. He shows a great understanding for the game and really educates himself well on how to play the ‘Whitecaps Way’. He gives everything he has to training and really shows an appetite to get better and to push himself. Over the past few months in particular Paul has really shown himself to be a team player and the first to volunteer, ask questions, or give fantastically knowledgeable answers (as well as giving Wyatt sleepless nights). Great work Paul, keep pushing yourself week on week, it is a pleasure to coach you!"

Kootenay West Academy Centre

Name: Molly Anderson
Birth Year: 2007
Hometown: Nelson
What her coaches say: "Molly has been a great addition to the Whitecaps Academy. Her positivity helps create a fantastic learning environment at all the sessions. She listens to everything the coaches have to say and this puts her in a great position to grow into an excellent player - her improvement is noticeable week to week. Well done, Molly. You have a bright soccer future ahead of you and we hope to be a part of it for a long time!"
Name: Hunter Lloyd
Birth Year: 2001
Hometown: Christina Lake
What his coaches say: "Hunter has been an essential part of the Whitecaps Academy this year. Making the nearly two-hour drive in the snow every week is emblematic of his incredible dedication to getting better - and as a coaching staff we are thrilled with his work ethic and determination. The energy he comes to training with is contagious, and he raises the level of everything he's a part of. As a goalkeeper, the fearlessness  he plays with is spectacular and will undoubtedly take him far. Congrats, Hunter. We're excited to be a part of your development and can't wait to see where the game takes you."
Kootenay South Academy Centre
Name: Sophie Veitch
Birth Year: 2007
Hometown: Castlegar
What her coaches say: "Sophie joined our program this year and has quickly adapted to our training standards. She has a fantastic work ethic with a great competitive spirit at such a young age. She is very comfortable on the ball and has great vision and awareness. Sophie brings great energy to the sessions and always plays with a smile on her face.  It is a pleasure to see her progress every week. Well done Sophie!"
Name: Romeo Gelber
Birth Year: 2005
Hometown: Castlegar
What his coaches say: "Romeo has joined our program this year and has shown great improvement both in his technical and tactical understanding of the game. He is a player who always wants to get on the ball and shows great composure under pressure. He is very well engaged in the sessions and coachable. He is a joy to coach and I look forward to see him develop further. He totally deserves this month’s award!"

London Youth Academy Centre 
Name: Sadie Waite
Birth Year: 2004
Hometown: St. Thomas, Ontario 
What her coaches say: "Sadie was part of the Ontario Selects Girls team at the Whitecaps FC Academy Centre Combine in Richmond, BC this month. She was selected for the Game of Distinction, where she excelled against some of the best players in the country, including the BC Girls Elite REX program who played in that game. Great job Sadie."
Name: Elesio Melillo
Birth Year: 2004
Hometown: London, Ontario
What his coaches say: "Elesio was part of the Ontario Selects Boys team at the Whitecaps FC Academy Centre Combine in Richmond, BC this month. Elesio had an excellent showing as a goalkeeper throughout the week and was selected for the Game of Distinction for the top players from the combine against the Residency 2004 Boys team where he played the first half and kept a shutout. Keep up the great work Elesio."

Manitoba Academy Centre
Name: Treyah Paquette
Birth Year: 2004
What her coaches say: “Treyah's abilities to dribble away from pressure and her leadership qualities make her a very dynamic player. She played very well during the Whitecaps FC U-14 combine in Vancouver this month, earning a selection to the Game of Distinction.”
Name: Ebalo Amuri
Birth Year: 2004
What his coaches say: “Ebalo is an incredibly hard-working athlete and this month his effort was rewarded with some fantastic performances at the Whitecaps FC U-14 combine in Vancouver, with a selection to the Game of the Distinction. Great work Ebalo!"

Northern Academy Centre
Prince George
Name: Makena Maki
Birth Year: 2001
What her coaches say: "Makena has been inspirational in training over the past month. Her ability to take a consistent, directional first touch into space always gives her more space and time on the field. She is also one of the hardest working players in the training group when her team is out of possession. Her bright and enthusiastic personality is infectious on the players and coaches! We very much look forward to seeing you grow further as a player and person Makena!" 
Name: Andrew Isaac
Birth Year: 2005
What his coaches say: "Andrew's training habits are an example to all players in our academy. He has a tremendous work ethic which inspires and displays leadership qualities by helping others around him during different activities and games. He has a fantastic mentality in transitional moments of the game, always decisive when he wins possession back for his team, and is very quick to react to get the ball back when he does lose possession of the ball. Keep up the great work Andrew!"
Name: Katie Winchester
Birth Year: 2006
What her coaches say: "It has been fantastic to watch Katie grow as a player over the past year in our academy. She is now imposing herself more during the training session, looking to be decisive in the dribble and pass during the right moments of the game. Her decision making has also become better due to her technique improving. She is now much more confident as the ball travels towards her, therefore able to scan around before she receives, thinking of her next step. Keep up the great work Katie!"
Name: Ray Giesinger
Birth Year: 2008
What his coaches say: "Ray plays with freedom and flair with the ball that we look for in every one of our younger players. His ability to be intricate and dribble in tight spaces has improved considerably over the past few months, which is a testament to how much time he is spending practicing outside of our weekly session. He also works very hard for his team when out of possession and chooses the right moments to pass to a teammate in a better position to score. A very bright future ahead for Ray!"
Name: Adrianna Nisyok
Birth Year: 2007
What her coaches say: "Adrianna is now having a massive effect during game in which she is now a difference maker during sessions. Through her consistent hard work, Adrianna's technical ability has improved which has now given her the confidence to try new skills during games in which she is having great success."
Name: Adian Kluss
Birth Year: 2004
What his coaches say: "Adian's technical ability has not only improved over this fall phase but now also his attitude has shone. He is becoming a real leader during sessions with his positive attitude and work ethic. It is down to his high effort levels that Adian has improved greatly."
Prince Rupert
Name: Delanie Hebert
Birth Year: 2002
What her coaches say: "Delanie's technical ability has improved greatly through her hard work and continuous practice outside of our academy sessions. With Delanie continuing to practice and work hard, I have no doubt that she will be playing at the next level soon!"
Name: Fisher Witzke
Birth Year: 2010
What his coaches say: "Fisher was a new recruit at the start of this phase and he has been a breath of fresh air! His engagement and passion levels have made him transition into the academy without any problems at all. Keep up the great work Fisher!"

Okanagan Academy Centre

Name: Skylee Sigurdson
Birth Year: 2004
What her coaches say: "We have seen great improvements in Skylee’s confidence over this phase and as a result the improvements she has made in her game are really starting to come out during practices. We look forward to seeing further progression in Skylee."
Name: Justin Ruscheinsky
Birth Year: 2004
What his coaches say: "Justin has a great attitude and work ethic. His ability to play with his feet is a definite strength and his understanding of the role a goalkeeper plays in aiding team possession is certainly improving. His fundamentals are solid and we look forward to seeing him develop further in future phases."

Ottawa Academy Centre
Name: Alexa Ebeid
Birth Year: 2008
Hometown: Ottawa, Ontario
What her coaches say: “Alexa has been fantastic throughout March. She was among the first to hand back her ‘player tasks’. Her work rate is improving week on week. Instead of standing up front, Alexa now sees the need to affect the game in different areas not just by scoring goals. Although she is pretty good at that too, scoring some wonderful goals this past month! Well done Alexa – keep up the hard work!”
Name: Brady Boucher
Birth Year: 2008
Hometown: Ottawa, Ontario
What his coaches say: “Brady, like Alexa, was one of the first to hand back his ‘Player Tasks’ in March. He went out of his way as he couldn’t be at a session due to vacation (which he was gutted about!) – he got his Mom to scan in his tasks and email them over. Great commitment Brady! As well as his commitment to the academy with his player tasks and attendance, Brady shows an enthusiasm for the game which, along with his sharp technical ability, is a pleasure to coach. Well done Brady – great work!"

Vancouver Academy Centre 

Name: Iba Oching
Hometown: Burnaby
Birth Year: 2006
What her coaches say: “Iba has an enthusiasm and energy that is infectious, It’s impossible to wipe the smile off her face. She has worked incredibly hard over the last 12 months, which has seen her find her x-factor. With speed, clever footwork, and good balance, she is very hard to take the ball off. It’s a pleasure to see Iba play with so much heart, joy, and a love for the ball. The hard work certainly pays off, and we are looking forward to what she can achieve in the future!”
UBC Academy Centre
Name: Tegan Ross
Birth Year: 2009
What her coaches say: "It was a fantastic end of the term for Tegan. I have been particularly impressed with Tegan’s attitude to learn and develop as a soccer player. She is an important part of the group and her work ethic inspires teammates to achieve more. We are really excited to keep developing Tegan and watch her grow within the program. Well done!"
Name: Diego Velazco
Birth Year: 2009
What his coaches say: "Diego’s attitude stands out. He is such a likeable and positive young boy who gives it everything every session. Diego is able to run with the ball at speed and use his close ball control to evade defenders. He possesses a low centre of gravity which gives him opportunities to try his skills and tricks. Diego has been a delight to coach. Keep up the great work."