There were colourful and, at times, emotional moments as the Ponoka’s provincial soccer champions of U18 boys’ and girls’ teams came together at a dinner on Tuesday, Aug. 16 with the participation of municipal dignitaries.
Ponoka Mayor Rick Bonnett and town CAO Albert Flootman were on hand as was Ponoka County Councillor Bryce Liddle to join the event to mark the success of the town’s soccer teams, both of which won the top spot in the tournament hosted by Ponoka Minor Soccer Association (PMSA).
President Rob McArthur of PMSA paid tribute to all involved in the development of soccer in the community over the past decade alongside the volunteers who made the recent provincial tournament a success.
In his address to participants, McArthur recalled fond memories of the times when he coached the members of the provincial champion teams in U6 or U8 teams and made the point that it was the first time in 16 years in Alberta that both boys’ and girls’ teams of the same community had captured the provincial championship title in a home tournament.
Bonnett described the achievement as an “amazing feat” and Liddle thanked both teams for making the community proud. Liddle added he was also glad to have experienced the excitement as a parent watching the close games.
Assistant coach Cameron Horan for the boys’ team and Lonny Behm, the head coach for the girls’ team, thanked their players for what they called an amazing season. The players in their turn thanked the coaches for their leadership and encouragement throughout the season.