UBC Thunderbirds

By Ali Lee, With Photos From Christian J. Stewart (ISN)

October 31, 2013, VICTORIA (CIS) – The University of British Columbia Thunderbirds started their run for their 15th McCrae Cup with a dominating 10-0 win over the Waterloo Warriors on Thursday night in Game 1 of the 2013 CIS Women’s Field Hockey Championships at the University of Victoria.

The opening game of the tournament was a David and Goliath story as the T-Birds tallied six penalty corner goals and four on free play, while boasting a starting roster of eight players with international experience.

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UBC’s Kate Gillis (3) runs the ball upfield away from Waterloo’s Stephanie Snyder (7) and Kendra Domenicucci (16)(Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

Three Thunderbirds found the back of the net twice, including Cassandra Tayler, Natalie Sourisseau and Abigail Raye, while Sophie Huijskens, Kate Gillis, Sara McManus and Hannah Haughn also got on the board. Bea Francisco was credited the shutout after facing only one shot as the T-Birds dominated with 13 penalty corner opportunities throughout the game.

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Waterloo’s Stephanie Snyder stickhandles away from UBC’s Kate Gillis (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

For the Warriors goalkeeper Nickole LeVear was outstanding despite a lopsided goal margin. The third-year posted 17 saves, 13 of which came in a wave of UBC attack in the second frame. Alana Raymond and Ally Kocukov did well to maintain possession coming out of the backfield for the Waterloo squad with 12 players in their first or second year of play.

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Waterloo’s Alexandra Kocukov tries to avoid a stick check from UBC’s Abigail Raye (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

The Thunderbirds opened play with two goals in the opening four minutes, both credited to Tayler. Fifth-year defender and recent Gail Wilson award winner Miranda Mann set up both options on penalty corners with a deceptive drag to the right post. Only four minutes later and an original shot from Tayler was deflected by Gillis past LeVear to make the score 3-0 for the T-Birds.

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UBC’s Abigail Raye, here moving ahead of Waterloo’s Emily Thomson, was named the UBC Player of the Game in UBC’s opening 10-0 win over the Warriors (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

Rookie Huijskens got her reverse stick on a Mann penalty corner option in the 21st minute to give the ‘Birds a commanding 4-0 lead entering the break.

Much of the same action continued in the second half with Mann setting up Raye in the 42nd minute and Haughn in the 63rd on right-side penalty corners options. Midfielder Sourisseau showed her experience putting away a fore-hand hit from the stroke mark in the 46th and a back-hand shot from the top of the circle in the 48th.

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Waterloo’s Stephanie Snyder carries the ball through mid-field on Thursday against UBC (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

To seal the game McManus capitalized on a straight-shot corner option, while Raye added her second of the game with a reverse-stick shot after a Waterloo turnover. Despite the score margin the young Warriors had strong performances from Raymond, Kocukov and, in particular, Le Vear, who was named player of the game. Raye was given the honours for the T-Birds.

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Waterloo’s Stephanie Hyde (left) and UBC’s Caitlan Evans (right) battle for a loose ball on Thursday in Game 1 action (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

The final score was 10-0 in favour of the two-time defending champions, UBC, who will now turn around to face the No. 2-seeded Guelph Gryphons at 4:30 p.m. PST. The Warriors will face hosts, the Victoria Vikes at 6:30 p.m. Both games will be broadcast live at http://cis-sic.tv.

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UBC’s Kate Gillis looks for a way to move past Waterloo defender Alexandra Kocukov (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

Official championship website:http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/fh/index 


UBC: 4-6: 10

WAT: 0-0: 0

First half

  • UBC: Cassandra Tayler (1), 3rd minute
  • UBC: Cassandra Tayler (2), 5th minute
  • UBC: Kate Gillis (1), 8th minute
  • UBC: Sophie Hujskens (1), 21st minute

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UBC’s Shanlee Johnston fires a pass up the pitch during Thursday’s match against Waterloo 
(Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)

Second half

  • UBC: Abigail Raye (1), 42nd minute
  • UBC Natalie Sourisseau (1), 46th minute
  • UBC Natalie Sourisseau (2), 47th minute
  • UBC: Sara McManus (1), 50th minute
  • UBC: Abigail Raye (2) , 51st minute
  • UBC: Hannah Haughn (1), 64th minute

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Waterloo’s Caitlin Huber sprints past UBC’s Caitlin Evans during Thursday’s action 
(Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)


UBC: Nickole LeVear (L, 70:00, 10 GA, 0-1)

WAT: Bea Francisco (W, 70:00, 0 GA, 1-0)

Players of the game

UBC: Abigail Raye (Kelowna, B.C.)

WAT : Nickole LeVear (Milton, Ont.)

More Images from this game are available on Christian J. Stewart’s web site HERE.