VICTORIA- The University of Victoria men’s soccer team dropped their second straight game to the UBC Thunderbirds on Oct. 6 by a score of 3-2 at Centennial Stadium in Victoria.
Kristian Yli-Heitanen’s goal in in the 42ndminute proved to be the game winner for the UBC Thunderbirds. Matteo Ventura scored his eighth of the season in the 57thminute to bring the Vikes back to within one but were unable to find a third before time was up. Third-year Vike Jack Hill came close during injury time but with three T-birds defenders in the way of an open net, pushed his shot wide.
“It is never easy to come to Victoria and get a win,” said UBC head coach Mike Mosher. “We are happy to be leaving here with three points today. There were a few mistakes late that almost cost us but overall we are happy with our performance.”
With the win, the UBC Thunderbirds remain undefeated with a 10-0-2 record, the Vikes fall to 3-6-3.
“The boys battled hard today and played a lot better than we did a couple days ago in Vancouver,” said Vikes head coach Dave Wilson, referencing the Vikes 5-0 loss to UBC on Oct. 4. ” We are feeling a bit unlucky to not have earned at least a point in this game after the scoring chances we had at the end.”
The game began with the Thunderbirds striking first. In the sixth minute, UBC defender Connor Guilherme notched his first goal of the season, picking up the ball after Sam Fletcher crossed it into the box. The T-birds 1-0 lead didn’t last long before Victoria’s Evan Libke evened the score just three minutes later. Matteo Ventura placed his corner kick perfectly, allowing Libke to deflect the ball into the net to tie the game up at 1-1. Ventura had a chance to put his squad up in the 25thminute but his shot missed just wide right of the net. Before the half was over, UBC got two more goals, one from Caleb Clarke and another from Kristian Yli-Hietanen, to give the Thunderbirds a 3-1 lead at the break.
Ventura brought the Vikes back to within one of the Thunderbirds when he unloaded a powerful shot that beat UBC goalkeeper Chris Hansen-Barkun in the 57thminute. In the 79thminute, Clarke had a prime opportunity to restore the T-birds two-goal lead but Vikes’ keeper Jas Lally was up to the task. Victoria continued to press in the late stages of the game in search of the equalizer. With Hansen-Barkun down and out, Jack Hill had his own prime scoring chance but with three UBC defenders still in front of the goal, Hill pushed his shot wide right during injury time. The Thunderbirds locked it down the rest of the way to secure the 3-2 victory and remain undefeated on the season.