Nov 06, 2014
By Nick Murray, Communications Liaison 2014 CIS championship / Photo credit Mike Needham, UPEI Photography
CHARLOTTETOWN (CIS) – In the end it was sheer will. After a pulsating end-to end game in which no team deserved to lose, it was two fifth-year Panthers from the island – Jared Murphy of Charlottetown and Logan Dawson of Hampton – who put tournament host UPEI into the semifinals of the CIS men’s soccer championship thanks to a 2-0 extra-time win over the Saskatchewan Huskies, Thursday night.
Only four teams are left standing in the quest for the Sam Davidson Memorial Trophy, including three that are still looking for their first CIS title. In Friday’s semifinals, McMaster and UQAM will face off at 4 p.m. AST, while York and UPEI are set to battle at 6:30 p.m., live on www.CIS-SIC.tv.
Of the four, only York has hoisted the coveted trophy in the past, winning in 1977, 2008 and 2010.
The first 90 minutes had seen both teams go close but no one could quite find the cutting edge. Both goalkeepers – Brett MacDonald for UPEI and Michal Bandula for Saskatchewan – had dealt with everything their opponents could throw at them, while the defences stood firm.
The excellent Garrett Peters was a constant threat for the Huskies, while the Panthers – all steel and grit with their six-feet plus midfielders Dawson, Lowther and Hogan – putting up a barrier while at the same time providing their own considerable offensive threat.
The visiting Huskies, crowned conference champions for the first time in program history last weekend, entered the competition as one of the highest-scoring teams in the country with a Canada West-leading 44 goals in 12 leagues games. But they could never find their rhythm on the night.
As the ninety minutes ended and the third overtime contest of opening day started, the big crowd braced for penalties, but in the 110th minute, Murphy found himself put through on goal. He used his pace, forced the ball past the onrushing Bandula, and coolly placed it into the empty net. It seemed like an eternity for the ball to cross the line.
Saskatchewan tried to hit back but a few minutes later it was all over – Dawson this time finding the net after good work by Dylan MacKenzie.
Panthers coach Lewis Page was generous in his praise of Saskatchewan afterwards.
“They were a very good team who came to play, but this is a great moment for us,” said Page, the 15-year coach of the Panthers. “We had that will and desire to win. We are all delighted, but tomorrow we have another big game, and we need to be ready”.
For Murphy, the goal was a sweet moment. Last year, he sat out the season just so he would still have eligibility for this championship, and it was a moment like this that made it all worthwhile.
“We were knocking on the door, we knew it was coming, and to score what turned out to be the winning goal is just unbelievable,” he said.
Extra Time (2 x 15 mins – no golden goal)
PEI: Jared Murphy (1), 110th
PEI: Logan Dawson (1), 119th
PEI: Brett MacDonald (W, 0 GA, 8 saves, 120:00, 1-0)
SSK: Michal Bandula (L, 2 GA, 11 saves, 120:00, 0-1)
Shots: PEI 17; SSK 13
Shots on Net: PEI 13, SSK 8
Corners: PEI 8, SSK 8
Offsides: PEI 6, SSK 1
Fouls: PEI 8; SSK 4
Yellow Cards: PEI (Brett Hogan; Logan Dawson)
Red Cards: None
Players of the game:
PEI: Logan Dawson
SSK: Garrett Peters
SCHEDULE & RESULTS (ATLANTIC TIME)
Thursday, Nov. 6
11:00 Quarter-final 1: McMaster 2, UNB 1 (3-2 PK)
13:30 Quarter-final 2: UQAM 2, Alberta 1
16:00 Quarter-final 3: York 1, Montreal 0 (OT)
19:00 Quarter-final 4: UPEI 2, Saskatchewan 0 (OT)
Friday, Nov. 7
11:00 Consolation 1: UNB vs. Alberta (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
13:30 Consolation 2: Montreal vs. Saskatchewan (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
16:00 Semifinal 1: McMaster vs. UQAM (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
18:30 Semifinal 2: York vs. UPEI (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
Saturday, Nov. 8
11:00 5th-place game (www.CIS-SIC.tv)
About Canadian Interuniversity Sport
Canadian Interuniversity Sport is the national governing body of university sport in Canada. Every year, over 11,500 student-athletes and 700 coaches from 56 universities and four regional associations vie for 21 national championships in 12 different sports. CIS also provides high performance international opportunities for Canadian student-athletes at Winter and Summer Universiades, as well as numerous world university championships. For further information, visit www.cis-sic.ca or follow us on: