Co-op Highlanders focused on big picture as they prepare for TSS Academy
VICTORIA – The Peninsula Co-op Highlanders will look to keep their perfect Pacific Coast Soccer League season record intact when they take on TSS Academy, June 28 at 5:00 p.m. Saturday’s match will see the two sides facing each other for the second game in a row after a 9-0 Highlanders victory at Hampton Park last Sunday.
Kiara Kilbey led Victoria in their previous match with a second half hat-trick. While 2013-14 University of Victoria Vikes leading scorer Emma Greig netted a brace in the opening half. The Highlanders’ victory pushes them to the top of the PCSL table with 15 points, where they also lead the league in goals scored with 24 and lowest goals against with five. Five Highlanders including Greig, Kilbey, captain Liz Hansen, midfielder Sarah Douglas and NCAA standout Katie Kraeutner feature in the leagues top-10 in scoring heading into this weekend’s competition. After a couple close matches to open the season against the Whitecaps and Fraser Valley Action, head coach Dave Dew made sure his squad was responsible on both sides of the ball moving forward.
“Our defending away from the ball is much better and organized,” said Dew.“We have to maintain that standard [throughout the season], we can’t just turn that on and off. We can’t just say because other teams are struggling that we’re not going to defend.”
TSS Academy sit fourth in the PCSL table with three wins, four losses and nine points. Goals have been hard to come by for the mainland-based squad, who have registered just 10 goals this season while allowing 22 against. The team is tied with Whitecaps in points but have played seven total matches compared to Vancouver’s five. Despite TSS’s struggles in the league this season, Dew insists that previous season results have helped his squad to remain focused for games such as this throughout this season.
“We’ve been in the PCSL twice before,” added Dew. “We came in second the first time and last year coming back to the league we were only one point off of first place. We’ve been in second place twice, we do not want to be second for a third time. We still talk a lot about last year’s playoffs, that is always in the back of our minds.”
Kick-off in Winskill, Delta is set for 5:00 p.m. The women’s squad will return to Hampton Park on Sunday July 6 to face off against Kamloops Heat at 12:30 p.m. before heading on the road for the final two games of the regular season. For team results and more information on the Highlanders, please visit www.highlandersfc.ca.