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PREVIEW: Gee-Gees women’s soccer set to represent Canada at FISU World Cup in China

PREVIEW: Gee-Gees women’s soccer set to represent Canada at FISU World Cup in China

As the U SPORTS soccer season came to a close, the Ottawa Gee-Gees women's soccer team reset their focus on a once in a lifetime opportunity to play on an international stage.

For their efforts capturing the 2018 U SPORTS National Championship last season, the Gee-Gees were selected with a wildcard berth to represent Canada at the first ever FISU University World Cup – Football in Jinjiang, China from Nov. 21 to Dec. 1.

The World Cup will see eight of the world's top women's university teams compete to become international champions over the course of the 11-day tournament.

"It's an absolutely unique experience," said Gee-Gees head coach Steve Johnson. "It's an amazing opportunity and I hope that our players realize right from the beginning how lucky they are to be able to take part in it."

Ottawa was placed in Group B for the group stages, alongside College Asian Scholars from Thailand, Siberian Federal University from Russia, and Donghua University from China.

"I hope that we adapt very well to our opponent's different playing styles," said Johnson. "You only get one shot against the team and there's only 90 minutes. We have to make sure we figure things out right away in each and every game."

The Gee-Gees will field a highly-talented roster headlined by 2019 U SPORTS All-Canadians Mikayla Morton and Katherine Bearne, who will lead the charge for the Gee-Gees in China.

Returning from last season's team is 2018-19 University of Ottawa Athlete of the Year and National Championship MVP midfielder Miranda Smith, as well as forward Delaney Rickert-Hall.

Morton and Rickert-Hall are joined by OUA All-Star striker Emma Lefebvre, as well as newcomers Soumaya Bouak, and Angelina Gendreau who round out the team's forwards.

Bearne and Smith anchor the highly-talented midfield, alongside third-years Katerine Delev and Hailey Walsh, as well as first-year Adriane Devlin.

The defence is where the team sees the most depth and strength, headlined by fifth-year Thea Nour, fourth-year OUA All-Star Cooper Lee, and third-year Julia Tardioli, the Gee-Gees aim to be tenacious on the back line. Freshmen sensations Trinity Esprit, Becca LeBlanc, and Kaylane Hogue round out the rest of the team's defenders.

The Gee-Gees will be in good hands with two veteran keepers on the roster, fifth-years Margot Shore and Gabrielle Emilien will be minding the net for team against international competition.

See below for the team's schedule and roster. All games will be live streamed for free at Please stay tuned to the Gee-Gees website and the team's social media channels at @GeeGeesWSOC for more information.


Opening Ceremonies – Nov. 21 – 5 p.m. local time (4 a.m. EST) - Jinjiang Football Park

Game #1 vs. Donghua University at Quanzhou Vocational and Technical University Stadium – Nov. 22 – 8 p.m. local time (7 a.m. EST)

Game #2 vs. Siberian Federal University - Jinjiang Sports Center Stadium - Nov. 24 – 6 p.m. local time (5 a.m. EST)

Game #3 vs. College of Asian Scholars - Jinjiang Sports Center Stadium - Nov. 26 – 6 p.m. local time (5 a.m. EST) 

Game #4 vs. TBD (depending on placement) – Nov. 28 - Location and time TBD 

Game #5 - Finals – Nov. 30 – Location and time TBD

Closing Ceremonies – Dec. 1 – 9:45 p.m. local time (8:45 a.m. EST) - Jinjiang Football Park


First Name: Last Name: Position: Position Abv. Height: Hometown:
Katherine Bearne Midfield MF 5-4 Halifax ON
Soumaya Bouak Forward F 5-5 Newmarket ON
Katerine Delev Midfield MF 5-4 Chelsea QC
Adriane Devlin Midfield MF 5-5 Stouffville ON
Gabrielle Emilien Goalkeeper GK 6-0 Toronto ON
Trinity Esprit Defence D 5-6 Scarborough ON
Angelina  Gendreau  Forward F 5-4 Lancaster ON
Kaylane Hogue Defence D 5-5 Laval QC
Becca LeBlanc Defence D 5-4 Sydney NS
Cooper Lee Defence D 5-3 Toronto ON
Emma Lefebvre Striker F 5-4 Kingston ON
Mikayla Morton Forward F 5-6 Courtice ON
Thea Nour Defence D 5-6 Ottawa ON
Delaney Rickert-Hall Forward F 5-7 Waterloo ON
Margot Shore Goalkeeper GK 5-8 Ottawa ON
Miranda Smith Midfield M 5-4 Ottawa ON
Julia Tardioli Defence D 5-4 Ottawa ON
Hailey Walsh Midfield MF 5-3 Courtice ON


Steve Johnson - Head Coach
Stuart Barbour - Assistant Coach
Jean Berchan - Assistant Coach
Sarah Gillanders - Athletic Therapist
Danika Smith - Team Lead