By Ali Lee,
(ISN) – VICTORIA, B.C. – The University of Victoria Vikes women’s soccer team wraps up their Canada West regular season this weekend and with quarter-final hosting rights on the line, the Vikes will have the added boost of home field advantage. UBC and Fraser Valley will trek to the island for games this weekend, Oct. 17-18, at Centennial Stadium.
The Vikes are currently tied with Fraser Valley for second in the Pacific Division with 7-1-2 records. Both teams are five points back of the CIS No. 1-ranked Trinity Western who have 28 points. This week the Vikes dropped from No. 4 to No. 6 in the CIS top-10 polls, while Fraser Valley went from being unranked to No. 10 on the list.
The Vikes will be looking to rebound off a tough weekend, Oct. 10-11, where the team garnered only one point after a 1-0 loss to the Trinity Western Spartans and a 1-1 tie to the Fraser Valley Cascades. Carly Branion-Calles was the lone goal scorer over the weekend, as the fifth-year notched her third of the season.
Offensively the Vikes are lead by fourth-year striker Emma Greig who has amassed six goals and seven assists in 10 games played, while fifth-year midfielder Jaclyn Sawicki totals four goals and three assists. Rookie Caitlin Milham has continued to come in off the pine and show her ability to attack and defend with both speed and grit.
Keeper Meaghan Storie totals three shutouts and has only five goals against in 10 games. That record is largely due to the quality defensive efforts of Lindsay Machin, Mallory Hackett, Elise Butler and Maryse Reichgeld.
Last weekend third-year transfer from Missouri Abigail Raymer played her first two games as a Vike and started in both of them. Over the weekend Raymer put up six shots and is likely to be a lethal offensive addition for Victoria.
Head coach Tracy David will be fine tuning over the weekend as the playoffs draw near but the Vikes will for sure need to take care of business in order to guarantee hosting rights of the Canada West quarter-finals. A third or fourth place finish in the division will mean a road trip to one of the top two teams in the Prairie Division. In the running right now are Calgary, MacEwan, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
The Vikes opened their 2014 CIS campaign with a 2-1 win over UBC, who are currently fourth in the division with a 5-3-2 record. UBC boast second-year striker Jasmin Dhanda, currently leading the T-Birds with five goals and two assists. UBC are in a safe position to guarantee a spot in the quarter-finals but two wins this weekend could put them in better seeding for the cross overs.
Fraser Valley have a big weekend ahead as they play two-time defending CIS champs Trinity Western on Friday and then the Vikes on Saturday. Spartans midfielder Jessica King scored in the 90th minute to lift Trinity Western up 2-1 over Fraser Valley in their season opener on Oct. 5. Since then the Cascades have gone undefeated winning seven in a row and tying their last two games, Oct. 10-11, against both UBC and Victoria.
The Cascades boast freshmen striker Monika Levarsky who leads the team with six goals and four assists, while senior Shelby Beck is just as potent, currently with four goals and three assists. Veteran keeper Kayla Klim has been solid between the pipes logging five shutouts and logging a goals against average of .0.56.
The Vikes will play UBC on Friday, Oct. 17 and Fraser Valley on Saturday, Oct. 18. Both games will be at 5 p.m. at Centennial Stadium and will be broadcast with live video and stats at uvic.canadawest.tv.
Note: If the Vikes host a quarter-final playoff game it will take place on Saturday, Oct. 25 at 5 p.m. at Centennial Stadium. Play-off ticket prices will be in effect.