By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications / Photographs by Glenn Ivens
October 7, 2012 VICTORIA – The University of Victoria Vikes men’s soccer team defeated the Fraser Valley Cascades 2-1 on Sunday. The Cascades are on the heels of the Vikes for the final playoff spot in the Canada West Final Six tournament, as the UVic men push their record to 5-3-2, while the Cascades drop to 1-3-5.
The Vikes dominated in play and had two first-half goals from midfielder Craig Gorman (Victoria, B.C.) on a penalty kick, as well as Craig Taylor (Victoria, B.C.). Both goals lift Gorman and Taylor to five goals each throughout the season.
The Cascades got on the board in the second half when Connor O’Neill’ connected on a volley that stunned Vikes keeper Elliot Mitrou (Victoria, B.C.) in the 75th minute of play.
UVic’s Cam Hundal controls the ball as University of Fraser Valley’s Jared Gibbons closes in. (photo by Glenn Ivens)
“We knew this would be a very important game for both sides,” said Vikes head coach Bruce Wilson. “We played really well in the first half and credit to their goalkeeper who kept us off the board. Credit to (Fraser Valley) because they played really well down a man and we just didn’t capitalize.”
The Vikes opened the game gaining early offensive pressure with their first chance coming in the seventh minute of play. Gorman was found alone in front of the net and his left foot just misconnected with the ball to send a rolling shot just wide of a diving Cascades keeper Mark Village..
The UVic men continued to push forward and in the 18th minute of play, a goal kick from Mitrou landed on the head of Cam Hundal (Terrace, B.C. ), whose flick on was one-timed by Gorman. Village stepped up well to make the save from close range. Village was called to action less than a minute later when Gorman fed Taylor inside the box and his close-range shot was again stymied by the six-foot-two Village.
Vikes’ Craig Taylor moves ball to an open winger against the Fraser Valley Cascades on Sunday. Taylor would score his 5th goal of the season in a 2-1 Vikes victory. (photo by Glenn Ivens)
The Vikes were finally rewarded for their efforts in the 23rd minute on a Cascades handball in the box that sent Gorman to the penalty kick spot. Gorman was forced to take the penalty kick twice as players were called for encroaching the box early but on both attempts Gorman was able to finish and give the Vikes the 1-0 lead.
The Cascades back line, commanded by Village, did well to keep the Vikes at bay but in the 31st minute, Taylor’s left foot found the back of the net to lift the Vikes’ lead to two.
Just before the break, Cascades’ leading striker Sasa Plavsic was sent off the pitch with a red card for physical play on a tackle on Vikes’ David Adams (Surrey, B.C.). Down a man and down by two, the Cascades entered the break looking to climb back from being down 2-0.
University of Fraser Valley’s goalkeeper Mark Village had a strong game against the UVic Vikes on Sunday. (photo by Glenn Ivens)
The Vikes dominated in possession in the second half of play with the man advantage but Cascades defedners Ravi Singh ad Colton O’Neill played a strong defensive game to limit the Vikes forwards’ attempts at goal.
In the 74th minute, against the flow of the game, O’Neill’s left foot connected on a volley from the top of the box. The shot curled into the top right-hand corner of the net and both Mitrou and the Vikes back line were unable to react as the Cascades put themselves within one goal.
The UVic Vikes were able to rise above the Fraser Valley Cascades and earn a 2-1 win on Sunday at UVic’s Centennial Stadium. (photo by Glenn Ivens)
Despite the late surge of energy from the Fraser Valley side, the Vikes took the 2-1 win and three points that gets them closer to securing their spot for the Canada West playoffs set for Nov. 1-4.
The win gives the Vikes 17 points and a 5-3-2 record, while the Fraser Valley Cascades trail in fourth in the Pacific division with a 1-3-5 record. Up next, the Vikes will travel to both UBC and Trinity Western on Oct. 19-20, while the Cascades will visit UNBC for a double header on Oct. 13-14.
VIC: 2 – 0 : 2
UFV: 0 – 1 : 1
VIC: Craig Gorman (24′ PK), Craig Taylor (31′)
UFV: Connor O’Neill (75′)