by Ali Lee, Vikes Communications
February 3, 2014, VICTORIA (ISN) – February started on a positive note for the University of Victoria Vikes men’s field hockey team that earned their first win of the year after they defeated the Victoria Selects 4-0 on February 2 on home soil.
Rookie Trevor Feehan pocketed two goals for the Vikes, while netminder Toby Owen once again stood tall between the posts for the shutout.
“Both the players and I were really happy to have such a good team performance today,” said Vikes head coach Kevin Laidman. “All the pieces have been there this season but today we really found a way to put them all together.”
The Vikes had a shaky start, giving up a penalty corner in the opening minute of play. Tough defensive work kept the Selects off the board initialy but the waves of pressure forced several turn overs out of the Vikes back line. Owen was called to action on some early Selects attempts but following a five-minute period of frantics, the Vikes settled their nerves.
In the 10th minute the Vikes found themselves in their attacking end with their first corner of the match. An inaccurate pull out worked out for the better as Derek Wigginscontrolled the trap on his forehand and blasted a hard shot towards goal. First year forward Alexander Smith was there with his stick on the ground to redirect the ball in for the Vikes’ 1-0 lead.
Gaining some confidence and momentum the Vikes poured on the pressure, effectively executing a high press and forcing several turnovers from the Selects squad. In the final minute of the first half the Vikes capitalized once more after Prabh Sahota creating his own space for a shot on goal. Feehan calmly deflected the ball in to give the Vikes a 2-0 edge entering the break.
The Vikes continued to maintain possession and control the pace of the game. Brenden Bissett was key in anchoring the Vikes midfield, distributing and organizing attack. Bissett set up Connor Martin and Sahota each for a high quality opportunity but both were unable to capitalize in the second half.
In the 57th minute, Greg Tonkin did well on a Vikes counter attack, sliding the ball through a defenders legs to find sahota. Sahota calmly fakes his initial shot and passed to Feehan who unleashed a flick into the top shelf for the 3-0 Vikes lead.
With three minutes to go Martin finished off a passing sequence that saw five Vikes one-time the ball within the Selects’ circle and give the Vikes the final 4-0 score margin.
The Vikes hope to carry this momentum with them next weekend, Feb. 8, when they face the UBC Thunderbirds in Vancouver at 12 p.m.