Vikes women edged by Birds in field hockey home opener

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By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications

September 29, 2012, VICTORIA – The University of Victoria Vikes women’s field hockey team hosted the UBC Thunderbirds Friday in their first match up of the 2012 season, with the T-Birds prevailing 4-1.

The long-time CIS dynasty battle was a fitting event as UVic is hosting its 50th anniversary and homecoming celebrations throughout the Sept. 28-30 weekend.

The Thunderbirds, whose roster boasts several team Canada stand outs, held most of the possession and attack in the opening half. Third-year Cassandra Tayler opened the scoring in the 32nd minute off a quick break down the left side. First year forward and Junior Pan American silver medallist Hannah Haughn assisted Tayler and added two one just before and one just after the half time break. Forward Kate Gillis also got on the board in the 69th minute.

The Vikes women started six freshmen on the pitch, with four of them anchoring the back field. Rookie keeper Sheriden Goodmanson (Victoria, BC) made several key saves to keep the score line tight for the majority of the game, while central defender and Claremont grad Annie Walters-Shumka (Victoria, BC) was pivotal in plugging the center of the field. The Vikes got on the board on a penalty corner finish by veteran midfielder Kyla Kirby (Victoria, BC).

“I’m quite pleased with the result since we have eleven new bodies on this team trying to still get used to each other,” said Lynne Beecroft, who enters her 29th season as head coach of the Vikes women. “It’s pretty hard to play against a refined, well-oiled type of team (UBC).”

The Vikes women had their first opportunity in the 8th minute of play on a penalty corner struck well by Kirby. The shot was well blocked on the line by UBC’s Shanlee Johnston.

Following a quick series of circle entries by the Vikes, the Thunderbirds began to find their roots and Canadian team mates Natalie Sourisseau, Rachel Donohoe, Gillis and Haughn turned on the offensive pressure. Goodmanson and her back four defended off a series of UBC penalty corners to keep the Birds off the board.

The Vikes then the chance to go ahead n the 31st minute on a penalty corner. The short pull out to Emily Fisher was deceptively sent across the top of the circle to a wide open Lizzie Yates. Yates blasted a shot just wide of the net.

Three minutes following, Haughn danced her way through the Vikes backline and finished a shot to earn her first goal in a T-Birds jersey and give her team the 2-0 advance into half time.

Following the break, a strong run by Johnston along the right side baseline allowed her to free up Haughn in front of the net. Haughn calmly drew the ball to her reverse stick and flicked the ball past Goodmanson to get her second of the season and send the Birds up 3-0.

In the 47th minute, T-Birds defender Katrina Waldron hauled down UVic’s Amanda Watson (North Vancouver, BC) in the circle, giving the Vikes their opportunity to get on the board. A set play from Kayleen van der Ree (Courtenay, BC) to Kirby with a defender’s deflection helped the Vikes get the first goal against Junior Canadian national team and UBC goalie Bea Francisco.

UBC improves their record to 3-0, while the Vikes drop to 2-1 in the three-team Canada West standings. The Vikes and T-Birds will rival again for their second game of the double-header weekend on Sept. 30 at 11 a.m. at UVic’s artificial field hockey field.

SCORING SUMMARY

1st – 2nd: F

UBC: 2 – 2 : 4

UVIC: 0 – 1 : 1

32nd – UBC: Cassandra Taylor (Assist: Hannah Haughn)

35th – UBC: Hannah Haughn

47th – UBC: Hannah Haughn (Assist: Shanlee Johnston)

50th – UVIC: Kyla Kirby – PC

69th – UBC: Kate Gillis – PC

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