By Ramisha Farooq
When Alex Rodkin was 10 years old, she saved up all her birthday money and bought a David Beckham instructional DVD. She stood in front of her TV and practiced her left kick for hours.
That kick now has her making waves with the Ryerson women’s soccer team and establishing herself as one of the biggest offensive threats in the program. This past weekend, she scored four goals in two games. She was also named Ontario University Athletics and Canadian Interuniversity Sport athlete of the week.
The leading scorer on last year’s team had three goals during the whole season.
“She’s done really well for us especially as a first-year player coming in and threatening the defensive line of the other team the way she does,” said assistant coach Tina Cook. “She does well off her own instincts and I think we can build off that.”
Rodkin has started in six of the first seven games played and has a team leading six goals to start the season. That includes the game winning goals against Queen’s and Royal Military College of Canada this past weekend, the first two wins of the season for the team.
Before those wins, the team had been outscored 20-5 in five losses. Rodkin said the team is better than their record shows.
“I think that teams might think that we’re not as strong of a team as we are. They just see the results, they just haven’t seen us play. We are actually a very strong team,” said Rodkin. “Everyone knows how we can play but when we get on the field sometimes it just falls apart and we forget about what we need to do on the field to win games.”
The speedy striker said she owes a lot of her success to her parents who are always honest about what she needs to do better.
“Ever since I was little my parents always wanted me to do the best I could do and push me to do that,” said Rodkin.
She says they’ve always given her everything she needed to succeed. Her father Bob, however, attributes her success to playing with a competitive team.
“I think she’s been playing really well. Being on this team has really pulled her out of her shell,” Bob said.
Rodkin, joins the team just two years after suffering a knee injury that benched her for an entire season.
“It was an awful year. She wasn’t a happy camper that year,” Bob said. “She always played through injuries until they really needed some attention.”
Rodkin said the team’s ultimate goal is to win a championship by the end of her time at Ryerson.
“I can see us making it really far, into the final four. Maybe even before [my last year],” said Rodkin. “We definitely have the potential to make it there one day.”