Out of town talent a key part of the Golden Shield mix
by Randy Pascal
The very core of most every successful varsity sports program at Cambrian College has been built around local athletes...which is not to suggest
that coaching staffs involved with the respective teams do not value key contributions from out of town talent.
In fact, most would readily admit that in order to compete with the “big boys” of the OCAA (Ontario Colleges Athletic Association), Cambrian must
find a way to attract athletes from the very backyard of many of these provincial heavyweight teams.
In that sense, the Golden Shield media reception on Monday afternoon that introduced a total of fifteen new varsity freshmen to the fold contained
something of a “double whammy” for the Cambrian soccer squads.
One of three recruits who signed on to the men’s soccer fold, Chester Ashby of Mississauga would love nothing more than to follow in the
footsteps of 2017 graduate Evan Phillips, a fellow GTA-based keeper who ranked as one of the top goalies in the OCAA in recent years, an all-star
talent with the Golden Shield men.
With a decade of grooming with the likes of the Mississauga Falcons, Mississauga Croatia and now the Clarkson Comets, Ashby is confident
that he is ready to tackle the challenges of collegiate level soccer.
“I understand that it’s going to be a big step up from what I am playing now, playing against guys that are four to five years older than me,” he said.
“I just want to keep working on every aspect of my game, to be at the top of my game and do what I can to help the team win.”
“I’m a very aggressive goalie, quick off my line and good with my feet. I think I’m very solid.” And though Ashby had not previously travelled to
Sudbury prior to attending a recruitment visit, it didn’t take long for the northern scenery to catch his eye. “There’s a lot of outdoors stuff, a lot of
water, mountains. It’s beautiful here.”
Though Ashby had never visited the Nickel City, he still had a leg up on inside midfielder Ashley Nollner, a eighteen year old joining the
women’s soccer team, leaving behind her home in Etobicoke. “I had never even heard of this school before,” she admitted with a smile.
“I was at a Showcase Tournament and was scouted there. They talked to us about Cambrian, gave us a lot of information and that attracted me. I was open
to a different environment to study in. Because it’s a small school, it seems like more of a family. And the program I am taking (Physical Fitness
Management), it seems right for me.”
A long-time member of the Islington Rangers who has suited up with the Dixie Athletics the past two summers, Nollner sees herself very
much in the role of playmaker, a wonderful asset on a team that has been blessed, in recent years, with some of the top scoring options in all of Ontario.
“I’m quick with the ball, I don’t usually take on a one to one player,” she said. “I will usually pass the ball to keep the play going quickly.” That
“speed of game” component is also one of the attributes of yet another key recruit, this time with women’s volleyball, and much, much closer to Sudbury.
Setter Isabelle Rivest was one of five new recruit to the Shield women's volleyball program, a key component with Vision Volleyball last
year, and the anchor to the Franco-Cité Patriotes team that claimed silver at the OFSAA “A” championships in March. Thankfully, Rivest has
benefitted from a broad base of training that extends well back to her
“This past year, with school I played setter and with rep I played left side, so it actually gave me two completely different views of the game,” she
suggested. Still, setting is where her heart lies, the position that presents the challenge that Rivest simply cannot wait to tackle.
“It’s all about confidence,” she said. “It’s a lot of pressure, but I feel that’s what is so much fun about it, making it so intense. Location (of the
sets) is really important, just making sure you get the ball to where it’s supposed to go.”
Already armed with a boatload of training material to scan over the course of the summer from coach Dale Beausoleil, a former setter himself,
Rivest is anxious to continue expanding the scope of her game. “I’m already jump setting, but I want to do it a lot more,” she stated.
“You need to stay on the ground once in a while, but I find that jump setting is better and helps the game move faster.” Following is a complete list of
the 15 new athletes that were welcomed to Cambrian on Monday, along with the graduating school in the case of the SDSSAA guys and girls:
Shawn Belanger (Collège Notre-Dame)
Chester Ashby (Mississauga)
Carter Hanson (Confederation)
Isaac Oliveira (Bishop Carter)
Kayleigh Coufal (Confederation)
Alexis Belanger (Macdonald-Cartier)
Ashley Nollner (Etobicoke)
Kaitlyn Rocca (Collège Notre-Dame)
Brianna Scarfone (Sault Ste Marie)
Cole Krassey (Atikokan)
Mykayla Beeson (Confederation)
Jade Gauthier (Lasalle)
Teagan Langis (Confederation)
Isabelle Rivest (Sturgeon Falls)
Brooke Whitteker (Collège Notre-Dame)