Sydney Coe may have started on the slopes, but don't be the least bit surprised if soccer is ultimately the sport of choice for this very gifted young elementary school talent.
While alpine skiing is seldom the initial introductory sport for most athletic youngsters, Coe found it not the least bit surprising in her case, "not the least bit unusual in this family", as she noted.
"I remember waking up on Saturday mornings, and Sundays, and having to go out to the hill and practice all day," said the 14 year old recent grade 8 graduate of MacLeod Public School. "I don't remember being that good at it."
"Turning is one of the first skills that you learn," she recalled. "If you're really little, you use a harness and just stay on the bunny hill, attached to an adult. They ski down either in front or behind you and keep you centered."
"It's probably been the sport that I have trained for the most, spent the most time on." Apparently, it's been time well spent, as Coe finished first overall in the U14 division of Northern Ontario Alpine Ski Racing, representing the Adanac Ski Club once again in 2018-2019.
This, however, was hardly her only sporting pursuit.
"I have that and a bunch of other sports that are tied as favourites," explained the eldest of two children in the family (younger brother Ryder is primarily a hockey and golf guy). "Most of my sports are in different seasons, which works out well."
In fact, quickly off the top of her head, Coe listed soccer, volleyball, basketball, softball and track among the events where she has donned the school colours. Much to the delight of MacLeod staff, it would seem.
"I'm competitive in every sport I do, I don't like to lose," suggested Coe. "A lot of our teachers at our school are competitive too." Still, she understands there is a balance to be struck. "I am competitive, but for school sports, it's not that big a deal - but I do want to win."
Though her current soccer commitments limit the time she can devote to track and field, Coe still managed to lay claim to gold in the high jump (1.55m) at the year-end Rainbow Elementary Champions Meet, as well as garnering a silver medal in the triple jump (9.25m).
In the long run, however, the world's most popular sport is likely to most captivate yet another talented participant. "I started out with Brian Ashton (Northern Soccer Academy) camps, played Timbits soccer, and moved to GSSC (Greater Sudbury Soccer Club) when I was 10 or 11," Coe recollected.
"My position is mostly striker, that's kind of where I've been put for the past many years." It's also where she is absolutely lighting it up, scoring a dozen goals as her team (GSSC Impact U14 girls) have won six straight games to open their 2019 HDSL (Huronia District Soccer League) schedule.
"You have to have certain skills, being fast and know how to shoot, but you also have to want to score and want to be there," Coe explained. "You have to know how to control the ball, and you have to know where the defence is going to be and where you need to be."
"I really started learning this a few years ago. I've had a bunch of different coaches, but they've kind of taught me the same thing - they just all have their own different opinions."
Come September, Sydney Coe is sure to be a welcomed addition to the stable of Lockerby Vikings' athletes, with sights set on competing in soccer, track and field, flag football, alpine and possibly basketball in her freshman year of secondary schooling.
And though she will tough it out throughout the fall and winter seasons, it's the sun and outdoors of spring time sports that will surely most excite her.
"Soccer will lead the others," said Coe. "It's my favourite sport, I have the most fun while doing it. And I don't have to be outside in negative thirty degrees."
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