Di­nos dom­i­nate UNBC in soccer play­off

The Prince George Citizen - - SPORTS - Ted CLARKE Ci­ti­zen staff tclarke@pgc­i­t­i­zen.ca

The upset the UNBC Tim­ber­wolves were hop­ing for Fri­day af­ter­noon on the U Sports Canada West women’s soccer pitch in Vic­to­ria failed to ma­te­ri­al­ize.

The Uni­ver­sity of Cal­gary Di­nos scored two goals in the open­ing half and added one more early in the sec­ond half to de­feat the T-wolves 3-0.

Mad­di­son Fritze got the Di­nos started 17:08 into the game, get­ting free in be­hind the UNBC de­fence to launch a shot from within the 18-yard box into an open net be­hind goalie Brooke Molby.

Si­enna Prince-McPher added to the to­tal at the 44:57 mark, sprung by a lead pass from Fritze.

Kelsie Macdon­ald gave Cal­gary got some more breath­ing room at 54:48 when she scored on a re­bound after the ball ric­o­cheted off Molby.

Molby was a busy net­min­der in her uni­ver­sity play­off de­but.

She faced 12 shots and stopped nine of them. Cal­gary goalie Lau­ren Houghton had just to saves to make, al­though T-wolves striker Sid­ney Roy came close to spoil­ing the shutout on a free kick 80 min­utes in and she blasted a shot off the cross­bar in the 83rd minute.

Fritze, with a goal and an as­sist, was picked as the player of the game for the Di­nos. Madi­son Em­mond, a fourth-year mid­fielder from Prince Ge­orge, was selected as the T-wolves’ stand­out player Fri­day.

“We asked a lot of her today, we asked the game to go through her and she ac­cepted the chal­lenge and played an in­cred­i­ble role on de­fence, very solid,” said UNBC head coach Neil Sedg­wick.

The game matched the T-wolves (3-7-4), the sixth-place fin­ish­ers in the Pa­cific Di­vi­sion, against the Di­nos (7-4-3), who placed third in the Prairies Di­vi­sion.

Cal­gary, a school of close to 30,000 stu­dents, was con­sid­ered the heavy favourite go­ing up against UNBC, which has a stu­dent pop­u­la­tion of about 3,500. The T-wolves were first-time play­off par­tic­i­pants, which dates back six sea­sons since they joined the Canada West Con­fer­ence.

“Cal­gary’s a good team, very ath­letic and well-or­ga­nized but we came out and and played some won­der­ful stuff,” said Sedg­wick. “Ob­vi­ously the event of it all, first time in the play­offs, had a bit of an ef­fect on the play­ers’ nerves in the be­gin­ning, but they man­aged to come through it ex­tremely well and re­ally out a good game to­gether in the end.”

The game marked the end of the uni­ver­sity soccer ca­reers of four fifth-year T-wolves – mid­field­ers Tianna Pius and Tianna Rossi, and de­fend­ers Fiona Ray­mond and Rhi­anne Fer­di­nandi.

Roy, a fourth-year striker, is grad­u­at­ing the UNBC ranks in De­cem­ber and won’t be a back for her fifth sea­son of col­lege el­i­gi­bil­ity.

“We couldn’t have got­ten to this point with­out a few years of a lot of good con­sci­en­tious peo­ple tak­ing some losses, in­clud­ing our­selves last year,” said Sedg­wick.

“You don’t make it to the top of the con­fer­ence with­out ex­pe­ri­enc­ing what it’s like to be first-timers in the tour­na­ment.

“I’m proud of where this group of play­ers has come from, not just this year but in­clud­ing last year, they’ve put their time, their ef­fort, their fo­cus into it and it re­ally showed on the field. Now it’s time to put on the work boots and re­ally see if we can grow dur­ing the win­ter as they did last year. I’m ex­cited to see where the group will be in Au­gust.”

The Di­nos ad­vance to a quar­ter­fi­nal play­off against the Vic­to­ria Vikes Sun­day at 2 p.m. in Vic­to­ria.

The UNBC men are in ac­tion Satur­day af­ter­noon in Ed­mon­ton for their first-ever Canada West play­off game. They take on the Uni­ver­sity of Al­berta Golden Bears in a quar­ter­fi­nal matchup (1 p.m. PT start, live up­dates on canadawest.org).

UNBC (5-5-6) clinched fourth place in the Pa­cific Di­vi­sion to qual­ify for the play­offs for the first time in their six-year uni­ver­sity soccer his­tory. Al­berta (9-1-4), the de­fend­ing na­tional cham­pi­ons and the the thir­dranked team in Canada, fin­ished first in the Prairie Di­vi­sion.

The win­ner will take on the win­ner of Trin­ity Western-Cal­gary quar­ter­fi­nal Satur­day night. The fi­nal four play­offs will be hosted next week­end by the high­est re­main­ing seed in the Pa­cific Di­vi­sion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.