Video Spotlight - Daniela Gerig

LANGLEY, British Columbia - Since arriving at Trinity Western, striker Daniela Gerig has been an absolute rock for the Spartans women’s soccer team.

While she may not be known as the flashiest of Spartans forwards and may not have received all the seasonal accolades of some of her teammates, when it comes to the Fort Langley, B.C. product, she’s about as steady and hard-working they come.

Over the past five years at Trinity Western, Gerig has consistently been amongst the Spartans top goal scorers, top shot-takers and top players.

Since her rookie campaign in 2007, Gerig has scored 31 goals in Canada West action and in her last four years has never strayed from the top three in team scoring. After scoring three goals in her first season, Gerig filled the net in her second year with 11 snipes, then added six more in her third year and last year was tied with Alicia Tesan for the team goal-scoring lead with seven tallies.

Add to that another four goals in only seven games this year and Gerig, who grew up about a five minute drive from the Langley campus, is well on her way to having yet another outstanding year in what will be her final season with the Spartans.

But talk to her off the field and you’d never know that the one they call DQ – apparently she enjoyed Dairy Queen when she was a young soccer player and, when told to come up with a nickname for herself that started with the same letter as her first name, the Bizzard blending joint came to mind and has since become her most common moniker – has such impressive numbers.

Nor would you necessarily know that she was named a Canada West Second Team All-Star last year, a tournament All-Star at both the 2008 and 2009 CIS Championships and was also the Championship MVP at the 2008 national event.

“She’s been a model Spartan,” said Spartans coach Graham Roxburgh of one of his most humble and consistent leaders. “She’s just a fantastic teammate. She cares for her teammates. She cares for the program. She has a competitive streak about her that says she’s not satisfied if she’s not scoring. She is such a servant to our program.

“She has demonstrated what it means to work hard and be professional and get better each and every season. That was rewarded with a chance to represent Canada this summer at the FISU Games [in Shenzhen, China] and she did so well at that.”

Gerig was added to Canada’s FISU entry late because of an injury but once on the team quickly became an integral part of the Canadian side that ultimately finished fifth, which matched this country’s best ever result in women’s soccer at the FISU Games.

And since returning to Trinity Western for her final campaign in blue and yellow, she’s continued to take her game to another level. And it’ll be tough for her coaches and teammates to see her go.

After all, next year, will be the first time since 2004 that the Spartans women’s soccer team won’t have a Gerig on the squad. Before Daniela, it was her older sister Christine helping to patrol the Spartans back line from 2005-2007.

And it was also Christine who was pretty much the reason Daniela decided to spawn her university career so close to home.

“I came to Trinity Western largely because my sister came here,” Gerig said. “I was too lazy to look around anywhere else. It was close to home, so I just went for it.  I really liked the Christian atmosphere and I’ve grown up with that my whole life.

“I always saw my sister playing and I always wanted to play.”

But while the younger Gerig yearned to get on a pitch and, as a youngster, talked about growing up to be a professional soccer, she didn’t actually hit the field until she was nine years old.

“My Mom wouldn’t let me play until I was a certain age,” Gerig recalled. “I’d always loved watching Christine’s games. So when I finally got to play it became a pretty big part of my life. I’d always be so antsy all day for games.”

In reality, things haven’t changed that much.

On game days, she gets just as excited before the games and once on the field she’s certainly just as competitive.

For example, when asked about the benefits of tight knit Spartans women’s soccer team, she said this.

“You feel free to get mad at others without them taking it the wrong way,” Gerig said. “If you get mad at them on the field, after you can explain yourself and it’s not a bad thing it’s a helpful thing.”

If you’re a Spartans fan, that’s exactly what you’d want to hear from one of the team leaders. She’s doesn’t lack passion.

As Gerig enters her second to last regular season homestand, her future in soccer is up in the air. Following graduation, she would like to pursue a teaching career but if a door opens in terms of soccer, she will certainly entertain the possibility.

But for now, it’s all about this year. And the way things are going for Gerig, there’s plenty of excitement left to be had on the field.

“I’m taking every game and going out as hard as I can because I can see the end already and it’s so close,” Gerig said. “I’m excited to start a new chapter in my life but I’m going to miss it so much.”

And the Spartans will miss her.

-TW-

Last Updated: 2011-10-07
Author: Mark Janzen