In a battle between two of the top teams in the country the No. 6 Calgary Dinos came out as the victors, handing the No. 1 Trinity Western Spartans their first loss of the 2019 season in a tightly played spirited match at Dinosaur Field Sunday afternoon in Calgary, Alta.
The Spartans got their lone goal from fifth year forward Jenaya Robertson (Delta, B.C.) and now lose their lead atop the Canada West’s Pacific Division to the Dinos. Calgary improves to 8-0-2, while Trinity Western drops to 8-1-1 on the season.
Second year keeper Hannah Miller (Langley, B.C.) made one save in the loss, while Calgary’s Lauren Houghton made three saves to earn the win.
Taylor Wells opened the scoring for the Dinos before Amy Mikuska put the match to bed with a game-winner on a penalty kick late in the second half.
The Dinos got on the scoreboard first with a controversial goal in the 10th minute. Kelsie MacDonald sent the ball on net where Wells got the final touch before it crossed the line. The goal was contested by Trinity Western as the side official had lifted their flag for offside, but goal was ultimately held up.
Just over 14 minutes later, the Spartans responded with a free kick just outside the 18-yard box. Robertson was able to curl the ball over Calgary’s wall and into the top left corner off of the hands of Dino goalkeeper Lauren Houghton.
With the wind in their favour in the second half, the Dinos fired three of their four shots on goal in the final 45 minutes of the match.
The Dinos’ pressure paid off in the 83rd minute when MacDonald was knocked off of her run, resulting in a penalty kick. Mikuska made no mistake firing the ball into the top right corner.
Trinity Western had two late corner kicks to try and even the score, but the Dinos’ defence held strong to hold off the comeback attempt.
TWU Head Coach Graham Roxburgh
“I’m really pleased with our team’s character today in a midst of a lot of adversity. They can hold their heads high for their effort in a very hard fought battle. Our back four was very solid, they played really well, and I was really happy with our overall corporate effort. Chances were always going to be a little bit hard to come by today because of how both teams play. And soccer was pretty hard to come by with the conditions of the wind and a bumpy field.”
“We were a little unlucky and the ball didn’t bounce our way, we had a header off of the cross bar right before their winner. I thought Jenaya’s free kick was a wonderful goal to get us back in it after a controversial goal by them.”
“In the end I think we were a little bit hard done by because of a couple of decisions but sometimes you get that on the road. I thought the decision to award them a spot kick was poor.”