By Ali Lee, Vikes Communications
October 27, 2012, VICTORIA – The University of Victoria Vikes men’s field hockey team displayed some quality defensive hockey despite losing 6-1 against a West Vancouver team that boasted several recent retirees from the Canadian national team.
The Vikes’ lone goal came from midfielder Tyler Klenk (Regina, Sask.) in the 49th minute, while goalkeeper Davis Robertson (Vancouver, B.C.) put up several key saves against quality international goal scorers.
The West Vancouver Millionaires displayed their experience right from the get-go when former team Canada defender Scott Tupper executed back-to-back penalty corners. Tupper capitalized on his signature drag flicks to the top right corner for the first two goals of the game in the 12th and 24th minute.
“I think between the 25’s we were really strong and we created quite a bit of opportunity,” said Vikes men’s head coach Michael Lee. “Their experience showed in both circles. They capitalized on their opportunities and did well to keep it out of the other end. This is the benchmark game for our team. It shows us where we can be but also that we need to focus on some of the minor details.”
West Vancouver continued to maintain possession throughout the half despite relentless pressure up front from Vikes forwards James Kirkpatrick (Victoria, BC), Matthew Sarmento (Vancouver, BC) and Ryan Litnosky (North Vancouver, B.C.) Vikes keeper Davidson did well to structure his defence of Nathan O’Riain (Calgary, Alta.), David Bell(Victoria, BC), Samuel Jones (Vancouver, BC) and Gavin Titley (Vancouver, BC) to keep the Millionaires at a 2-0 advantage entering the break.
A quick break out at the start of the second half led by Tupper got the Millionaires on the board in the 37th minute. Tupper found Sean Wilson at the stroke, to give West Van the 3-0 go-ahead. Three minutes later, former Vike Gavin Gentles (North Vancouver, BC) set up forward Joel Ward to push the visitors up by four.
The Vikes gained the circle on a few attempts but the experienced West Van back line kept rushes from Vikes midfielder Brenden Bissett (Vancouver, B.C.) and Kirkpatrick at bay.
In the 50th minute, former team Canada forward Mark Pearson used his speed to set up Wilson for his second of the match, sending West Vancouver up 5-0.
Pearson and Wilson combined well for several other attempts but UVic keeper Robertson was more than up to the task.
The Vikes had one of their best chances by Kirkpatrick, who was seemingly all alone in the circle but West Vancouver keeper Toni Kindler, slid out to deny any scoring chance.
The Vikes managed to capitalize in the 49th minute when midfielder Klenk showed brilliant resilience diving across the goal mouth to intercept and deflect a ball that West Vancouver was intending to transfer across the field. Klenk slid fully stretched with his left hand to one-time deflect the ball past a stunned Kindler.
West Vancouver forward Mike Oliver scored in the 59th minute to close the game at 6-1 for the Millionaires despite some great possession and midfield transfers by a young Vikes side.
WVAN: 2 – 4 : 6
UVIC: 0 – 1 : 1
WVAN: Scott Tupper (12′, 24′), Sean Wilson (37′, 50′), Joel Ward (40′), Mike Oliver (59′)
UVIC: Tyler Klenk (49′)
WVAN: Antoni Kindler, 70 minutes played, 1 GA
UVIC: Davis Robertson, 70 minutes played, 6 GA