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Holt steps down after eight years leading Ooks women’s soccer

By Admin User on December 13, 2019

The head coach of the NAIT Ooks women’s soccer team is stepping down after winning her sixth ACAC championship in eight years.

Holt’s championship banners from 2011-2019 on the wall of the NAIT Gymnasium

In each of her eight seasons, Holt has led the team to Canadian Collegiate Athletics Association (CCAA) national appearances. She has six Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) provincial championships to her name as well as two more ACAC silver medals alongside two CCAA silver medals and one CCAA bronze. She has also earned ACAC Coach of the Year on four separate occasions and has received one CCAA Coach of the Year award. Her final regular-season record after eight seasons is 75-5-2. 

“The only thing I didn’t achieve that I would have liked to achieve was to win a national championship. The individual awards are great and they’re important but they’re not the reason we do what we do,” said Holt. “I’ve always been a part of team sport. I’ve done very little in individual sports in my lifetime. I really like achieving something with other people.”

Holt’s final year with the Ooks has been a bit of a bonus year for her. She initially planned to step down in 2018.

We just had so much fun with the players that we checked in at the end of the season and said: ‘What about one more?’” said Holt. “Nationals were going to be hosted in Edmonton we had the opportunity to have our last games played at home in Edmonton.”

Holt announced her plans to her team prior to the provincial tournament. Marissa Webb, who just finished her fifth and final year with the team, said many on the team were sad to year the news.

“I felt like it was the end of an era,” said Webb. “I played five years with the same coaching staff and I think that’s something pretty special. Carole and I definitely built a relationship and it’s sad to think it’s coming to an end.”

Webb said that on top of being a coach, Holt was a friend to her.

“She has always made it clear that se is there for us no matter the circumstances and even in the off-season she always finds time to check up on us and care about what is going on in our lives,” said Webb.

What’s next?

While Holt may be leaving the Ooks, she is continuing to be active in the Edmonton soccer community.

She is an assistant coach on her daughter’s U14 club team and is an assistant coach with Alberta Soccer Association’s Regional EXCEL centre.

“Both groups of players are some of the best players in the province,” said Holt. “I’m excited because those are the players I hope will transition into post-secondary, wherever that is. I hope that I can help prepare some of those players for post-secondary or whatever soccer may come their way. Some of them might go on to play with the national program too.”



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