by James Nielsen, Vikes Communications
March 22, 2014, VICTORIA (ISN) – The first day of competition in the annual Keg Spring Cup tournament concluded Saturday, March 22, with the Vikes women dropping a 1-0 decision to UBC while the men captured a 3-1 win over the UFV Cascades.
As a result, The women will face off against the University of Alberta Pandas, at 10 a.m. in the consolation round tomorrow, while the men will face defending CIS champions, the UBC Thunderbirds in the finals at 4 p.m.
The Vikes women’s squad took to the pitch in the 2 p.m. slot, Saturday afternoon, facing the T-Birds for the first time since capturing bronze at the Canada West Final Four. A goal by UBC’s Shayla Chomney in the second minute of the first half proved to be the difference in the match.
The early defensive breakdown by the Vikes was not indicative of their play over the course of the opening 45, as the Victoria squad held field possession for a majority of the half . Fourth-year Vike Carly Branion-Calles and teammate Sarah Douglas provided the Victoria squad with their best scoring chances over the course of the game, with Branion-Calles breaking inside the six-yard-box at the 15-minute-mark but was unable to finish the play.
Douglas appeared to have the tying goal in the 53rd minute when her header went off the crossbar but dropped down directly on the goal line to keep the game at a 1-0 UBC advantage.
A late shot by Maryse Reichgeld in the 87th minute found the back of the net, but was ruled offside by the linesman as UBC would collect the victory, moving on to tomorrow’s final against the Trinity Western Spartans.
On the men’s side, the Vikes opened up the two-day tournament against the University of Fraser Valley, eventually advancing to Sunday’s finals with a 3-1 victory in the final game of the day. Cameron Stokes, Adam Plantinga and Cam Hundal scored for the Vikes, who dominated much of the match.
The Vikes opened up with a strong half against the Cascades, with third-year Vike Craig Gorman emerging as the most dangerous player on either side of the ball after generating several quality scoring chances. Gorman was unable to put the finishing touches on his opportunities as both sides headed to halftime tied 0-0.
The Vikes broke the deadlock early in the second half, as Stokes finished off a play to put his side up 1-0, but the lead would be short-lived. UBC’s Ryan Liddiard fired a shot across the box that bounced off the post and in to tie it up.
Hundal would re-establish the Vikes lead however, bringing the ball up to UFV’s touch line before crossing across the box to a waiting Plantigna, who would side volley it into the net to give the Vikes a 2-1 lead. Hundal would later put the game away with a blast from 20-yards out that put his team up 3-1, a lead they would maintain until the final whistle.
In Saturday’s earlier matchups, the Trinity Western Spartans women’s team defeated the University of Alberta Pandas 2-0, capitalizing on an Alberta own-goal as well as a tally from midfielder Jenna Di Nunzio. The other men’s match saw UBC handing the Spartans easily with a 5-0 victory off goals from Niall Cousens, Navid Mashinci, Otis Sandhu, Sean Einarsson and Cameron Davis.
Competition in the annual Keg Spring Cup concludes Sunday, Mar. 23. For more information visit www.govikesgo.com/kegcup