If you’ve ever wondered what all the fuss is about with Cowichan men’s master’s soccer, the Cowichan 49ers’ next match would be a great one to go experience live.
The team returns to Tony Grover Cup action on Feb. 25, playing host to long-time rivals, UVic Alumni in what’s sure to be an epic showdown at the Sherman Road turf at 6 p.m.
The 49ers are 16-0 thus far this season, heading into the quarterfinals of the Tony Grover Cup. Having outscored their opponents 57-6 in those 16 games, the 49ers knew they’d still have to show up on Feb. 18 when Gorge FC visited Cowichan’s home pitch for their second-to-last game of the regular season.
Not at all surprisingly, the 49ers had chances early and often putting pressure on Gorge. More surprisingly, it took 34 minutes before the 49ers found their first goal.
“Following some pressure from Ryan Fusick in the Gorge zone, the ball found the foot of Brad Archibald who wasted no time finding the net for the 1-0 lead,” said team spokesperson Adam Taft.
Archibald ended up playing so well he was awarded as Man of the Match.
“Arch was everywhere, and he continues to be a difference maker for us,” Taft noted.
Early in the second half, Archibald won a battle for the ball before sliding a pass to Stu Barker who finished a composed strike from 12 yards out to put Cowichan up 2-0.
It wasn’t a done deal though.
“Despite long periods of possession by the 49ers in the Gorge half, Gorge battled, and Vladimir Music set up a streaking Padelis Kamaretsos to make it 2-1 at the 76th minute,” Taft said. “Gorge has battled us all season and in the end, we were happy with the 2-1 result.”
The lads would love to see a huge turnout at the Sherman Road turf to help propel them past UVic and into the Tony Grover Cup semi-finals. Kickofff is 6 p.m.
Meanwhile, the Cowichan Steelheads masters team earned their second league win of the season by outpacing JDF Pacific by a 3-2 score at home on Feb. 18.
Kevin Smith kicked it off for Cowichan in the 21st minute to put his team up 1-0.
Kevin Smith scored for JDF Pacific to tie it at 1-1 40 minutes in.
Yes, both teams dressed a Kevin Smith and by all accounts, all Kevin Smiths played well.
Philip Turner scored for the Steelheads in the 50th minute and Cowichan fended off JDF Pacific until Nick Zuback scored in the 80th minute to give Cowichan a 3-1 lead. A counter eight minutes later made it 3-2 but that’s as close as JDF Pacific would get.
The Steelheads won their Round of 32 Tony Grover Cup game, beating JDF Blue 3-0 on Feb. 5. Travis Brown, Kevin Smith and Alan Kane all scored for Cowichan and Preston Johnny got the shutout.
The Steelheads fell to Vic West FC 9-0 in the Round of 16, however, knocking them out of Tony Grover Cup contention.
Up next for the Steelheads is a Feb. 26 road game against Fernwood Dragons FC.