ABBOTSFORD, B.C. (from Fraser Valley Cascades) – The University of the Fraser Valley women’s soccer program has once again extended its recruiting reach into Southern Alberta, signing a pair of players from Calgary.
Goalkeeper Andrea Perkovic and centre back Claudia Daboin, teammates with Calgary Foothills Soccer Club, will join the UFV Cascades for the 2018 season.
UFV head coach Rob Giesbrecht does the bulk of his recruiting in the Fraser Valley, but the Cascades have had some strong contributors from Calgary in recent years, including Calgary Foothills product Amanda Carruthers, who recently wrapped up a high-scoring five-year tenure with the program.
“We are delighted to add two quality recruits from Calgary Foothills – one of the premier soccer clubs in the country,” Giesbrecht said. “Both Andrea and Claudia have had outstanding youth careers and both have the potential to make immediate impacts. Both girls are members of the Generation Next Program with Foothills, which is a program that does a fantastic job preparing their players to succeed at the next level. We are pleased to be adding two quality individuals in Andrea and Claudia.”
Perkovic’s decorated youth soccer career includes a 2014 provincial title with Calgary’s South West United, and a subsequent silver medal at the national championships in Prince Edward Island. She also participated in the national championships in 2015 as a call-up with SWU Prime 98, playing in four of five games and winning another silver medal.
Perkovic’s Croatian heritage has also earned her multiple invitations to try out for Croatia’s age-class national teams. She was invited to a pair of U17 national team camps in 2016, and was invited to represent Croatia at the U20 Women’s World Cup qualifiers in 2017.
“Andrea is an outstanding goalkeeping recruit,” Giesbrecht said. “She will push to play in her first year and allows us to have a solid goalkeeping tandem with Joven Sandhu (Surrey, B.C.). Andrea is an excellent shot-stopper, has a very strong presence in the back and her distribution is exceptional. We are thrilled that Andrea has chosen to join our program and we look forward to seeing her thrive in our environment.”
“I chose UFV for the small class sizes and for how much they value their students, but also for the way the soccer program stood out to me,” said Perkovic, who plans to pursue a business degree at UFV. “I can see myself developing my soccer skills while also making new friends and helping the Cascades towards many championships.”
Daboin was part of the South West United squad that also featured Perkovic and won provincial gold and national silver in 2014. She also excelled at the Dallas ID camp, earning an all-star nod.
Beyond her club exploits, Daboin also starred for her high school soccer squad, serving as team captain at Western Canada High School and earning team MVP honours.
“We are excited to welcome Claudia to our program,” Giesbrecht said. “Claudia is an accomplished central defender who possesses many attributes that will allow her to transition well to university soccer. She is a skillful, hard-working defender who understands the game very well. She is a great passer of the ball and is dangerous on set-pieces.”
“UFV intrigued me not only because of the small class sizes and strong academics, but also because of the excellent soccer program and the potential I see in developing my soccer skills and friendships in this environment,” said Daboin, who will study kinesiology at UFV. “I hope to contribute to the team’s success and to help get the Cascades to competing in national competitions.”