Spotlight - Krista Gommeringer

LANGLEY, British Columbia - Sometimes it helps have a brother four and half years your senior.

At least it did for Krista Gommeringer.

The Trinity Western women’s soccer first-year striker was always ahead of the soccer curve – pretty much having a ball at her feet since she took her first ever step – but it was her chance to practice with older brother, Mark, and his soccer team from a young age that fast-forwarded her development and groomed her into the physically dominant forward she is today.

“I’m super competitive,” said the 5-foot-6 Gommeringer, who graduated from Calgary’s Lord Beaverbrook. “(Mark) started playing soccer at a young age and I always wanted to be better than him.”

And, if you ask her, and likely anyone else, she’s done exactly that.

And now that Gommeringer’s at Trinity Western, after being the earliest ever verbal commitment Spartans coach Graham Roxburgh has ever received, that motivation to be better than her brother has translated into a motivation to be better than any striker in Canada West.

And so far, she’s well on her way to doing that as well.

Through her first five Canada West contests, she has been nothing short of dominant. In the regular season, she has scored in every single game and is currently leading the conference in points with 13, including seven goals and six assists, which has her already five points clear of teammate Alicia Tesan and Victoria’s Emma Greig in the overall points race.

“She’s showing so far that she’s one of the most impactful recruits we’ve ever had,” Roxburgh said. “And that’s saying something because we’ve had some fantastic recruits.”

Despite her highly-touted arrival on campus and impressive expectations, Gommeringer has been everything the Spartans had expected and more. She has averaged more than 75 minutes per game and has already registered 19 shots on goal. She’s been physical and she’s been fast. And, evidenced by her first goal as a Spartan less than three minutes into her first game, when she ran onto a long ball from goalkeeper Kristen Funk and, with the a trio of hopeless defenders in her wake, buried her breakaway chance, Gommeringer is an offensive magician.

“She’s better than I anticipated and we had high hopes for her,” Roxburgh said. “She’s faster than what we first realized, so that’s been an added bonus. She understands the game and has a soccer IQ that is pretty special for her age.

“Her instinct to score goals is really good. She’s a complete forward in that she can score and set players up. She can run at people and she can post up.”

After earning the Canada West Female Athlete of the Week in her first ever conference weekend, it was abundantly clear Gommeringer was ready for university soccer. Replacing the likes of the graduated Daniela Gerig and the currently injured and former CIS Rookie of the Year (2008) Nikki Wright was never going to be an easy task. But through five games, Gommeringer has not only made the transition for the Spartans offense remarkably smooth but she has also made a near seamless transition individually to  the university game.

“It wasn’t too difficult because the way we play here is the way I’ve always been taught to play,” Gommeringer said. “We play possession with a purpose and we don’t just kick and chase and I was used to that.

And frankly, the former Calgary Alliance striker and, in her later years, midfielder, is just getting going.

“She’s still young, so sometimes she makes rookie mistakes and she still has plenty of work to do to keep her game on an upward curve,” Roxburgh said.

But the scary thing about that for opposing teams is that that means she’s only going to get better.

When Roxburgh first saw her in the summer of 2010, proudly sporting her German kit in a clinic Roxburgh and assistant coach Erin O’Driscoll were running in Calgary, he immediately knew, “she was a piece of our puzzle that we needed to get.”

And now that they have her in uniform, for both the Spartans, and the Calgary striker, who has an eerily similar gait and more than a few similar features to that of Canadian soccer-playing hero Christine Sinclair, the next five years look bright. With an accent of bright.
-TW-

Last Updated: 2012-09-28
Author: Mark Janzen