TORONTO - When Deputy Chief Peter Sloly asked 54 Division Const. Andrea Dagonas to be part of her 54 Division soccer team, she did not hesitate to comply.
In addition to being honoured by the senior officer’s request, Dagonas also knew that Sloly had played the sport at the highest level and he would be an asset to her side even though he retired from competitive soccer more than two decades ago. He was well on his way to becoming a national soccer star when injury forced him to pursue a policing career.
Despite best efforts, 54 Division lost 2-0 to 55 Div. in the championships game in the second annual 54 Division charity event on May 8 at the Toronto Soccerplex. Riaz Ebrahim and Andrew Tremblay were the goalscorers for the winning team.
“Soccer is a now a once-a-year activity for me and this is it,” said Sloly, who also played for the Toronto Blizzard, the North York Rockets and Scarborough Azzuri.
“The mind is willing but the body is not. It’s however fun to be out here competing with great teammates and for a very worthy cause that’s benefitting young people with significant needs.”
Sloly congratulated Dagonas and 54 Division colleague Cory Butler for spearheading the organizing of the fundraiser.
“They have outstanding organizational and leadership skills in putting on what is simply a fabulous event,” he said.
Nearly 250 officers from various units and Divisions took part in the 20-team competition. Funds raised from the event went to the William J. McCordic School for students with developmental disabilities. They presented a cheque for $5,000 prior to the start of the competition. The total amount raised was $7,391.
“Our goal was to outfit every class at the school with an Apple iPad which is a great learning resource for the students,” said Dagonas.
She thanked Service members for participating in the event and contributing to raising funds for the needy.
“This is a fantastic bonding experience for everyone to meet outside of work,” she said.
“We have lots of soccer players in our Service.”
In the semi-finals, 55 Division defeated Court Services 7-3, while 54 Division shut out defending champions 53 Division 2-0
The inaugural event raised $7,742 for the Hellenic Hope Centre, dedicated to providing support and services for special needs adults.
Content in partnership with Toronto Police Services.