ANGLEY, BC – Bring on the playoffs.
Whitecaps FC 2 (12W-9L-9D) wrapped up the regular season with a 2-1 win over Oklahoma City Energy FC (10W-7L-12D) on Wednesday night in front of 1,183 at McLeod Athletic Park.
Marco Bustos scored both goals for WFC2, bringing his season tally to seven.
With the win, WFC2 conclude their second USL season with 45 points – a 15-point increase from a year ago. They will finish either fifth or sixth in the Western Conference.
And they’re not done yet.
WFC2 will begin the 2016 USL Cup Playoffs on the road next weekend against either Colorado Switchbacks FC, Sacramento Republic FC, Rio Grande Valley FC, Swope Park Rangers, or LA Galaxy II, depending on this weekend’s results.
Wednesday night’s match kind of felt like a playoff game, too.
WFC2 head coach Alan Koch fielded a starting lineup featuring seven Canadians, including six graduates of the club’s Residency program.
Koch’s side looked dangerous throughout the first half – particularly on the counter.
Alphonso Davies looked lively on the left wing – as did Bustos and Kianz Froese in midfield. In fact, the Manitoban duo of Bustos and Froese set up Vancouver’s first two chances, sending Kyle Greig behind the OKC back line with a pair of fine throughballs.
Later in the half, Greig also headed a Froese free kick off the crossbar.
It was Bustos who opened the scoring, however, converting a penalty in the 16th minute after the Energy were whistled for a handball inside the box
At the other end of the park, WFC2 goalkeeper Spencer Richey didn’t have much to do in the opening frame, though he did deny an early Wojciech Wojcik strike from the top of the box.
It was a different story after the break.
OKC came on strong in the second half, forcing a Kadin Chung goalline clearance in the 56th minute and a Richey goalline save in the 72nd minute.
But WFC2 still managed to get a second goal.
Thomas Gardner, 18, set up the play with a cheeky nutmeg and lay off to Bustos, whose right footed finish trickled into the net from the top of the six-yard box.
OKC eventually found the scoresheet in the 81st minute courtesy of a Michael Thomas header, but WFC2 held on for the victory to end their regular season campaign on a positive note.
They’ll hope to ride that momentum into the postseason, which is set to begin on the weekend of September 30 and October 2. Stay tuned to whitecapsfc2.com for further information.
16′ – VAN – Marco Bustos (penalty kick)
74′ – VAN – Marco Bustos (Thomas Gardner)
81′ – OKC – Michael Thomas (Michael Harris)
Shots: VAN 19 – OKC 12
Shots on Goal: VAN 6 – OKC 4
Saves: VAN 3 – OKC 4
Corners: VAN 6 – OKC 7
Fouls: VAN 10 – OKC 16
22′ – OKC – Wojciech Wojcik
30′ – OKC – Michael Byskov
30′ – VAN – Kadin Chung
40′ – OKC – Coady Andrews
81′ – VAN – Marco Bustos
Whitecaps FC 2
39.Spencer Richey; 63.Kadin Chung, 51.Sem de Wit, 14.Cole Seiler, 46.Brett Levis; 38.Kianz Froese; 64.Thomas Gardner (42.Jordan Haynes 86′), 30.Ben McKendry (57.Thomas Sanner 89′); 67.Alphonso Davies (56.Daniel Haber HT, 48.Christopher Diaz 62′), 47.Kyle Greig, 32.Marco Bustos
Substitutes not used
24.Marco Carducci, 49.Fatawu Safiu, 54.Elliot Green
Oklahoma City Energy FC
1.Cody Laurendi; 19.Michael Harris, 26.Coady Andrews, 2.Jacob VanCompernolle, 3.Kyle Hyland; 6.Jose Cuevas (9.Danni Konig 80′), 8.Michael Thomas, 25.Michael Byskov, 15.Timo Pitter (22.Kalen Ryden 71′); 30.Andy Craven (27.Colin Bonner 80′), 28.Wojciech Wojcik (13.Linus Olsson 57′)
Substitutes not used
18.C.J. Cochran, 4.Cyprian Hedrick, 23.Luis Martinez