The image “http://www.twu.ca/athletics/images/womens-soccer/ws-2007-08/cw-brit-whit-cal-hug.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Brittany Heinrich-Always There
Women’s Soccer
Defender
Fifth year


The role of a central defender in soccer is an unheralded position. For the most part you are only noticed when you make a mistake. It is not a glory position. To play the position well you need to be able to play the ball well in the air and on the ground, be able to start an attack as well as stop a potential threat and you need to be strong and willing to deal with contact. Other then the keeper you are the last line of defense.


The Spartans Brittany Heinrich has been going about doing her job with a smile on her face for the last five years. From the sideline you may not have noticed her, but the visiting team’s forwards are always aware of where the 5’11” Kelowna native is situated on the field. “I want my year of girls to continue this legacy we started and keep it continual. I want our team to be a team that’ll be feared because we are a strong team and we will fight and play right until the end. This year, I want our defense to be the strongest D in Canada West,” said Heinrich.


She has played in 74 matches and started in all but two and this past weekend she became only the second player in school history to log more than 4,000 minutes, with 4,207 - trailing only teammate Lindsay Rohla with 4,371. Not bad for a player who wasn’t on the top of the recruiting list coming out of high school. “I wanted to play soccer after high school at the University level. Graham would tell you that I was at the bottom of recruits he was trying to recruit so we laugh and still joke about that now. I was one of his biggest surprises.”


The image “http://www.twu.ca/athletics/images/womens-soccer/ws-2007-08/cw-britt-header-seattle.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors."Brittany has shown throughout her career what a top notch, and valuable central defender she is. It has been a joy for me to see her develop more and more each year, and now in her 5th year I feel that she is playing at the top of her game. She defends tenaciously, wins crucial balls in the air and has formed a formidable partnership centrally with Whitney Agassiz. She helps anchor our back line, and has the ability to help start our attack from the back,” said TWU head coach Graham Roxburgh. “I have been very impressed with her work rate, her competent play so far this season and she has had an outstanding start to her 5th year. Brit in my opinion has the ability to be recognized as one of the best center backs in CIS."


In her past four seasons with the Spartans Heinrich has seen the high’s and low’s while being part of a program that has grown into being recognized as one of the best in the nation. Along with her fellow fifth year’s Brittany has two Canada West Championship gold medals and a CIS National Championship medal. “Never in a million years would I have thought prior to me coming here would I have had the chance to experience winning a CIS National Championship,” said Heinrich.


Brittany has been part of an amazing program over her time at TWU. But she still keeps everything in perspective when she steps on the field. “One of my favorites Bible verses comes from 2 Timothy: 2 Timothy 1:7 because it says ‘we weren't given a spirit of timidity but one of power, love and self discipline.’ My prayer before every game is this; that God would give me a spirit of power so I can be physical and aggressive, love so I can show fans and our competitors that God lives in me and self-discipline so I can be composed on the ball and make the right choices. I play for God every time I step foot on the pitch because He has blessed me with this incredible talent to play soccer. I am grateful for this opportunity and just want to show that by praising Him by playing the best I can in thankfulness. He is my number one fan.”


Where will Brittany end up after her career on the TWU soccer pitch is done, not even she knows. “I have so many ambitions that Id love to do. I would love to be a lawyer get into parliament get into criminology maybe join the CIA become the next Hazel Mae - we'll see what happens. Realistically, I'm aiming to possibly be a political advisor or get involved in the UN.”


Where ever she ends up you can be sure that people will know where Brittany is - on or off the field.

Last Updated: 2008-01-10
Author: Scott Stewart