Two players so alike in their personality and mannerisms, you would mistake them for each other of you didn’t know better.
Tammie Wilson, last season’s Dinos women’s soccer goalie-extraordinaire, now moves up the field, making room for rookie blue-chip goalkeeper Taryn Swiatek, as two of the nicest girls on campus accompany the championship team into another season of kicks and saves.
Wilson, a four-year Dinos veteran, only picked up soccer in grade nine, an amazingly short time to reach such a high level in the sport. It isn’t very hard to believe considering the emphasis she places on hard work.
"I don’t like it when people don’t try," said Wilson. "If you’re not going to try hard then there is no point is being [on the team]."
Her work ethic is not restricted to the soccer fields, though. An athlete with a passion for the outdoors and risqué sports,
Wilson participates in a multitude of activities all year.
"I just got into snowboarding last year," said Wilson. "I broke both my arms, but it’s not going to hold me back. I’ll be right back this winter."
Some other of her outdoor pursuits include skiing, motorcycling, rock climbing and windsurfing. Dare we say daredevil?
In terms of versatility, Swiatek isn’t far behind.
"I like camping a lot, and the outdoors," said Swiatek. "I played high school basketball and I really enjoy rugby and ultimate."
Nonetheless, Swiatek, a freshman Engineering student, obviously has soccer as number one on her activity list.
"I just want to be solid in the net," said Swiatek. "Do my part for the team and hopefully we can repeat."
Don’t be fooled by her young age. The 18-year-old Western Canada High School graduate has extensive club experience to back up her skills. Playing for the Celtics at the u-15 and u-17 age level, and for United at the u-19 level, should help her Þt into the Dino system with ease.
The shy yet enthusiastic Swiatek brings aggressive, orthodox goalkeeping skills to the Dinos net, something which was gravely lacking at this time last season. Perhaps one of last year’s weaknesses will become one of this year’s strengths as she is expected to play a solid role in the success of the Dinos this fall.