The University of Sunderland’s Women’s Futsal side marked two separate milestone achievements on Saturday.
Not only did the side book their place in the Northern Conference final, they also secured the Northern Tier Two league title in invincible fashion in the same afternoon at CitySpace.
This continued a brilliant week for many of the squad who are also members of Team Sunderland’s Women’s Football side who also became champions in the Aldi Northern Tier Three last Wednesday as they also look to end their season unbeaten with just two games remaining.
In their first of three games on Saturday, Team Sunderland emphatically put themselves in the final, beating UCLAN 23-3 in an incredible performance.
The remaining two fixtures would both see double figures hit again by the in-form team, as they beat Liverpool John Moore 11-1 before rounding off the day with a 12-2 victory against UA92. These wins got the points required to win the Northern Tier Two title in an unbeaten season.
Captain of both Women’s Futsal and Women’s Football, Victoria Curtis, spoke on the success for both sides.
She said: “I think the football and futsal team have been very successful this year for various reasons. All of the players are committed to coming to training and games meaning we were able to develop and train as a team throughout the season.
“There’s also a good strong bond between everyone within the team as well meaning everyone plays for each other and has the drive and determination to play their very best until the final whistle.”
The semi-final result sets up a date with York in Leeds on BUCS Finals Day on March 8.
Another member of both teams is Grace Daily, she spoke on the preparation and mentality of the squad heading into the final.
She said: “Obviously it would be amazing to win and we are all backing ourselves, but we’re all just super excited to see whats going to happen and how it will play out.
“We’ve beaten York before, we know we can do it again and I think that’s the mentality we’re bringing and trying not to focus on it being a cup final.”
Daily also feels that the form from football helped translate into success in futsal, given the style of play used by Team Sunderland.
She said: “I think we just see it as football on a smaller pitch and that makes us unpredictable for the other teams to figure out. I think personally playing as a full-back for the football team has given me a lot of versatility for where I can play in futsal and I know some of the girls feel the same way.”
As there is so much overlap between the suqads of football and futsal, Curtis has had time to really get to know her squads over the last couple of years. She expressed just how much this season has meant to them.
“I couldn’t be prouder of the girls and every single performance this season for both football and futsal! There’s no better feeling than going from being relegated last year in the football league and missing out on winning the futsal cup to winning the football and futsal league and getting into the final of the cup.
“Proud is an understatement of how I’m feeling about my teammates and the things we have achieved this year.”
All eyes now turn to BUCS Finals Day for the final against York where Women’s Futsal will hope to complete an incredible league and cup double.
No matter the result, this season has already shown that all members of both football and futsal have lots to be proud of.