RDC Queens second year defender Rebecca McBride looks to tackle SAIT Trojans player Misty Seastrom. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Sylvan Lake product among impressive group of RDC soccer Queens recruits

Grace Smith has received a scholarship to play with the RDC Queens.

There have been a number of cases where younger girls have developed as hockey players by playing with the boys.

In Grace Smith’s instance, she learned her soccer skills on the pitch with boys.

“I really wasn’t super interested in the sport until I started playing competitively with the (Sylvan Lake) Blizzards boys team,” said the 18-year-old Sylvan Lake native. “I think it helped my development for sure … it helped me hold my ground.”

Once she caught the soccer bug, Smith concentrated fully on the sport which has led to her receiving a scholarship to play with the RDC Queens.

“It was something I hoped for once I got into Red Deer and started playing for the Renegades, which is connected with the Queens,” she said.

Grace came up through the Sylvan Lake program, played with the Central Alberta Soccer Association U16 program, where she went to the provincials, then joined the Renegades in 2017.

This past season she was with the U19 squad, although COVID ruined their season.

“We were able to practice some, but no games,” she said. “It certainly hurts everyone by not playing, but we’re all excited about getting back.”

But what she did do was see more of Queens head coach Mahziar Peyrow, who was coaching the Renegades.

“I first met him at a training day with the Queens and he was super cool. I really liked his positive attitude. You don’t get that with some coaches.

“He understands teenage girls,” she said with a laugh.

While Smith liked what she saw in Peyrow, the veteran coach liked what he saw in the five-foot-four attacking midfielder.

“She’s a very strong player … she’s effective in that she can penetrate and has scoring capabilities.”

“I do like to score,” she said. “I like the position as you touch the ball a lot and decide where the play goes.

“The one thing I like the most is creating a crisp play. Even if you don’t score it’s good just to have that crisp play.”

Grace is one of 14 new faces to join the Queens this season and Peyrow, who was an assistant coach with the Kings when they went to the nationals in 2019, believes there’s a bright future.

“He brings that with him to our team and says we’re going to go to the nationals as well,” said Smith. “We all believe we have the team to do that”

“I may be biased but I feel this is the strongest team I’ve seen here for some time, at least in the last five or six years,” said Peyrow.

Grace is going into the business program at RDC and should be around for up to five years.

“I hope to stay and get my degree here,” she said. “I did receive an offer to go to Lakeland College, but wanted to stay at home and I do like this program.”

Peyrow has five players coming in from the Renegades and four from the Sherwood Park Phoenix Club.

“Because of the pandemic recruiting has been a little tougher, so you have to build relationships and we built one with the Phoenix Club, which has a very good program. “We have the four girls coming in this year and seven interested for next year.

“It’s a good feeder program as is the Renegades. We’re always interested in central Alberta players. We feel it’s important to work with the youth programs.”

Peyrow has put together an impressive list of recruits including sisters Sofia and Estel Quinteros, striker Paige Kalbfleisch, fullback defender Fernanda Giuntini and winger Tristen Clubine from the Phoenix.

The Quinteros sisters both played for the FC Barcelona soccer team in competition against B.C. and Ontario and for FC Barcelona Canadian women’s team in international competition.

Both sisters have entered the nursing program as did Kalbfleisch who played for Canada’s Green and Gold team in Barcelona, Spain.

Giuntini Bella was born and grew up in Brazil and received a number of offers from Canadian and U.S. universities but selected RDC because “it suited my goals in soccer and education.”

Clubine helped the Phoenix Club win a number of provincial and national titles while Jenica Swartz of Lacombe will also compete for the RDC cross-country team.

Other local additions include Corbynn Fujimoto, who also played with the Phoenix and the U of A Jr. Pandas, midfielder Natassia Wright, defender Rebekah Andasol and keeper Tamera Ferris.

Danny Rode is a retired Advocate reporter and member of the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame who can be reached at danrode@shaw.ca

Just Posted

The Government of Alberta identified 115 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, bringing the provincial total to 3,089.
(Black Press file photo)
Alberta reports 100 new cases of COVID-19

The Central zone sits at 218 active cases

The Government of Alberta identified 115 new COVID-19 cases Sunday, bringing the provincial total to 3,089.
(Black Press file photo)
Red Deer drops to 71 active cases of COVID-19

Province adds 127 new cases of the virus

Police officers and their dogs undergo training at the RCMP Police Dog Services training centre in Innisfail, Alta., on Wednesday, July 15, 2015. Mounties say they are searching for an armed and dangerous man near a provincial park in northern Alberta who is believed to have shot and killed a service dog during a police chase. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
RCMP search for armed man in northern Alberta after police dog shot and killed

Cpl. Deanna Fontaine says a police service dog named Jago was shot during the pursuit

Alberta now has 2,336 active cases of COVID-19, with 237 people in hospital, including 58 in intensive care. (Black Press file photo)
Red Deer down to 73 active cases of COVID-19, lowest since early November

The Central zone has 253 active cases of the virus

(Black Press File Photo)
Sylvan Lake RCMP charge youth with weapons offences

The public helped to identify the individual involved in an incident at the pier earlier this month

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

Orange shirts, shoes, flowers and messages are displayed on the steps outside the legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Tuesday, June 8, 2021 following a ceremony hosted by the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations in honour of the 215 residential school children whose remains have been discovered buried near the facility in Kamloops, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Alberta city cancels Canada Day fireworks at site of former residential school

City of St. Albert says that the are where the display was planned, is the site of the former Youville Residential School

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Canadians who got AstraZeneca shot can now see ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

Most Read