Bell Park teen Elizabeth Sarcevic makes State Futsal team (VIC)



Futsal goalie Elizabeth Sarcevic will play for
the Victorian women’s team in the national
championships. Source: News Limited

The 16-year-old was originally invited to trial for the Victorian 16-and-under girls but was soon considered for the youth (17-19) and open women’s sides.

Elizabeth found out this month she would line up for the top representative outfit. As goal keeper, no less.

It means a bigger court and bigger bodies.

But the agile Sacred Heart student, affectionately known as the “rubber band” due to her snap reflexes and ability to bounce back to position after diving on the floor, couldn’t be more ready.

“I’m honoured to be the youngest on the team,” she said.

“A million things are going through my mind when I’m out there. I’ll just try to keep focused and do my best.

“I’ll have to work harder.”

Many of the state players come from Melbourne Heart’s futsal program, of which Elizabeth is a member.

“We’re a very close team off the court and we’ve played with each other for a while,” she said.

“I hope we do well but the other states are really skilful.”

Elizabeth, who is a twin, started playing soccer when she was five before broadening her repertoire to the indoor version about four years ago.

Futsal is played with five members from each team on the court, with a smaller, heavier ball. There are several other differences to the world game, such as kick-ins and a five-second keeper possession rule.

Elizabeth’s ability is natural and sharp.

“I’m really quick and I have good reflexes,” she said.

“Sometimes I surprise myself.

“I love futsal – the speed and the adrenalin. I want to take it as far as I can go.”

Elizabeth also plays for Bundoora in the Women’s Premier League.

Mark Torcaso, who is the head coach of Bundoora and the state women’s futsal side, said the Geelong youngster was “the next best thing” after Australian soccer goal keepers Brianna Davey and Cassandra Dimovski.

Torcaso is also the specialist keeper coach at Melbourne Victory and said Elizabeth had a promising future in both sports.

“She’s still very young and has a lot to learn but she is getting better and better.”

Elizabeth has made state futsal sides four years running, but next month’s titles in Canberra will mark her senior debut.

The championships are from January 13-17 at the AIS.

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