Laval’s mayor and councillors take on SWLSB at soccer

Teams play to a close 8-7 finish for school perseverance

Martin C. Barry

Elected officials and employees from the City of Laval were defeated in a close 8-7 match in a benefit soccer match played against students and staff from the Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board at Lausanne Park in Saint-Bruno on Monday Sept. 19.

Time for a rematch

After playing against the SWLSB team in August in a softball match, as well as in hockey games last winter, Mayor Marc Demers and his teammates decided to follow up this month with a rematch, only this time at the sport of soccer. The overall purpose was to promote academic perseverance in school.

Joking before the game, Demers, who tended nets during the match, said no one from the opposing team should worry that if they scored goals that their municipal tax rates might suddenly go up. “Have fun. We’re all here for that,” he added.

SWLSB chairwoman Jennifer Maccarone said it was great to see parents and friends come out to stand on the sidelines and cheer on members of both teams who had agreed to the match for an educational cause. “You score as many goals as you can,” she said.

It’s how you play the game

“School perseverance is so important,” said St-Vincent-de-Paul city councillor Paolo Galati, who was coaching the City of Laval team. “This is an initiative started by the city to give back as much as possible.” According to Galati, it was executive-committee vice-president David De Cotis’s idea to begin staging a regular series of sports matches with the SWLSB as well as the Commission scolaire de Laval.

“Win or lose is not important for us,” said De Cotis. “We just want to have fun and enjoy the game with the students from the schools. This is exciting for all of us. It’s never been done before: three sports, during the winter, summer and fall. And, of course, the mayor of Laval is our goalie so we can’t go wrong with that.”

Mayor Demers in nets

Although he’d had only a bit of practice before the match, the mayor’s performance as goaltender for the city team earned praise from some of the teenaged members of the SWLSB squad. As Demers pulled quick moves to keep the ball out of the net, he was praised for his agility and ability to execute good saves.

De Cotis also managed to score several goals during the match. As the city team was lagging at one point as the match wore on, a decision was made to even up the roster by trading some players from the SWLSB.