VANCOUVER – The UBC Thunderbirds women’s soccer team suffered a 3-1 defeat at the hands of the University of Victoria Vikes at Centennial Stadium Friday night in Victoria.
The game started fast and furious fashion as the Vikes opened the scoring just 55 seconds in. Rookie Abigail Raymer headed home a cross to make it 1-0.
The Vikes only waited a minute to strike again and make it 2-0 through the first three minutes. It all started on an impressive run by Sarah Douglas from the center line before taking a 30-foot, long-range strike, making it 2-0 Victoria.
A great short passing play and a low strike by Victoria’s Jaclyn Sawicki forced Maracle to make a save in the ninth minute. Maracle continued to be busy, making two consecutive saves on shots by Douglas and Sawicki in the 21st and 24th minutes to keep the Thunderbirds in the game.
The Thunderbirds finally started to push upfront with the first test for Vikes goalkeeper Meaghan Storie coming from a shot by Taylor Shannik.
The second half started as strong as the first, as Jasmin Dhanda found herself in a one-on-one situation in the first minute of the second half, only to do what she does best and finish coolly to score the Thunderbirds first goal since the October 4.
That perfect start was ruined shortly after as Maracle was assessed a controversial yellow card for contact on Emma Greig inside the box resulting in a penalty kick for Victoria, which was converted perfectly by Cassie Dennis to make it 3-1 Victoria with only 48 minutes passed.
Dhanda, UBC’s leading goal scorer, almost had a second goal in the 61st minute with a great header that only found a better save by Storie, who pushed it to the post.
With the win, Victoria is one step closer to the important second-place position in the Canada West Pacific Division and a home playoff date in the first round. Meanwhile, with the loss UBC will face the defending national champions from Trinity Western University next weekend in the Canada West quarter-finals.
However, before they get there, the Thunderbirds (5-4-2) will wrap up the regular season schedule on Sunday against those same Spartans (8-1-2) at David Sidoo Field at Thundebird Stadium at 12 noon.