By Randy Wachtin
Highlanders players and staff were all smiles early Sunday evening having secured the season goal of reaching the Pacific Coast Soccer League playoffs. Teams with games in hand could not make up ground on the Highlanders who came out of the bye weekend confirmed of a season ending playoff semi-final contest to be played in Vancouver, July 25th.
Vancouver United FC completed their season currently holding first place on 35 points. The Highlanders with one game remaining hold second place on 30 points while the Mid-Isle Mariners with two games in hand coming into the final weekend are six points out of a share of first place.
This makes the Highlanders final regular season game this Sunday versus the Mariners a possible game for second place while the Mariners will need to win out this weekend for a league title with games on Saturday versus Abbotsford Magnuson Ford SC in Nanaimo, followed by the season ending derby in VictoriaSunday, July 19th, a 2pm kick off versus Highlanders at Royal Athletic Park.
“Making the playoffs was always the main goal”, commented head coach, David Dew. “We have done that and now look forward to our final league game and trying to secure second place. Disappointed we had so many draws, but considering how far we have come in three short months, I can see past that and look to a good run in the playoffs”.
No matter the result this Sunday, Highlanders FC will be travelling to Vancouver to compete for the Sheila Anderson Memorial Challenge Cup. They will be matched with either Mid-Isle Mariners or playoff hosts, Vancouver United FC at Trillium Park,3:30pm kick-off,
Saturday, July 25th. Semi-final winners will put it all out on the line on Sunday, July 26th, 1pm kick-off at Trillium Park.