The 2010 season was a rewarding one for the Cambrian women�s soccer team, though few players likely relished it as much as Brittany Michaud.
Injured through much of her final year of high school, the graduate of St Benedict Catholic Secondary School was informed just a week before starting her post-secondary studies that she could return to the pitch.
For the naturally athletic defender who had spent six or seven years with the Sudbury Canadians program, simply being back on the field was all she could have asked for � though it wasn�t always that way.
�When I was ten or so, I actually really hated soccer, because my sister (Kristen) played and I was always dragged along the her games,� explained Michaud.
In fact, it was only once her father agreed to coach one year of indoor soccer that Michaud developed a liking for the game. And while she has toiled primarily at the back end throughout her competitive soccer career, her original position was one more step back.
�When I first started, I was actually a goalie,� she said with a laugh. �I was the tall, lanky girl, so everyone said, �well, she can be goalie.�
But over time, her aggressiveness and athleticism facilitated the move to sweeper, all while she was also developing a love for the 100 metre dash.
�I had to basically choose between track and soccer, and soccer was much more important to me.�
One of several key players on the Cambrian team who are products of the local school system, Michaud suggests that the mindset on the Cambrian team started to undergo a dramatic change very early in the season.
�It started after we got our butts kicked by Algonquin � we realized that it was just embarrassing to get beat that bad� noted Michaud of a season-opening 6-0 loss on home turf, no less.
�After we won our first game, we realized pretty quickly that it�s a better feeling to win than to lose,� she conceded with a sly smile. �That made us work a lot harder.�
A fifth place finish would give way to the first playoff victory in Cambrian women�s soccer history, a shootout win that Michaud and company remember all too well.
�It was exciting, it was unreal � it was the best feeling in the world.� And with more than a week�s notice come the fall of 2011, Brittany Michaud would be only too happy to live it all over, once again.