Cowichan United’s Dennene Wallace boots the ball away from a Salt Spring player during last Sunday’s game. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Cowichan United’s Dennene Wallace boots the ball away from a Salt Spring player during last Sunday’s game. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Cowichan Cougars cruise in first test against A-level club

United’s league-best offence stymied by Saltspring

The Cowichan Cougars cruised to a 5-0 win over Prospect Lake under Friday night lights at Layritz Park last week in their first test of the season against an A-division club.

The Cougars had dominated play against their fellow B-division entries in the Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association O30 women’s soccer league, winning every game by an average of six goals. In their latest match, they proved they can run in the higher level by defeating the third-place team in the A division.

“Prospect could not match our speed and finishing,” Cougars coach Darian Achurch commented.

Jenna Waddy opened the scoring in the eighth minute, and Stacey de Lusignan converted a penalty shot 30 minutes later, giving her team a 2-0 lead going into halftime.

Prospect came out pushing in the second half, but couldn’t beat Cowichan goalie Sara Tweten and the strong defence in front of her.

“We knew they were going to come at us hard in the second half,” said Alita Mattin, who blocked several shots to earn Fresh Kenny’s Player of the Game honours. “We just tried to not give them too many quality chances.”

Waddy scored her second of the match and team-leading eighth of the season in the 53rd minute, and Ashleigh Narey finished a beautiful pass from Tarah Thomas for her first of the season 10 minutes later. Narey wasn’t done there as she scored on a breakaway two minutes later.

“They were both great passes,” Narey said. “I just had to focus on putting the ball in the back of the net.”

The Cougars will play another A team this weekend, playing host to Vic West FC at Evans Park at 10 a.m. on Sunday.

In Div. 2 action at the Sherman Road turf last Sunday, Cowichan United found their league-best offence shut down by Salt Spring United, who scored a lucky goal of their own to steal a 1-0 victory.

“It was a game of few chances on either end, but Salt Spring played a masterful away game, scrambling in a goal, and then sitting back limiting our chances and riding a little luck as well,” Cowichan coach Adam Paulson said.

Salt Spring dominated the early going, but Cowichan earned the first chance against the run of play in the 15th minute, but it was brought to a halt by a questionable offside call. Four minutes after that, Salt Spring earned a free kick, which pinballed around the box before spinning into the Cowichan net.

As the first half carried on, Keira Martin narrowly missed a pass from Madison Thomas at the far post, and Jada Hill broke through the Salt Spring defence, but couldn’t beat the keeper as she came out to challenge. The second half saw more chances for Cowichan as Martin nearly turned in a corner kick and Alyssa Klotz hit the crossbar on a free kick. Cowichan goalie Jenn Jack stopped a terrific opportunity by Salt Spring on the counterattack. The game came to a close after a hectic last few chances by Katerina Cook and Keisha Sampson.

“I felt that Salt Spring was more committed to getting on the ball than we were,” Paulson said. “They did all the little things that a team has to do to win, and got the breaks that you need to win games like that. Hopefully, the ladies use this as a learning experience. I was proud that the team never lost belief that they could find the tying goal, and on a different day it probably comes. I expect this weekend’s game against Bays will be very similar, so we will see if we can up our game to find a win.”

United will visit Bays United at Oak Bay High School this Sunday.

In Div. 3, NIFA Pacific suffered a setback to JDF United in Victoria last Friday, getting their lone goal from Maiya Modeste.

NIFA will visit Bays United on Saturday.

soccer

 

Sammy Maclean outraces a Salt Spring player to the ball late in last Sunday’s game at the Sherman Road turf. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Sammy Maclean outraces a Salt Spring player to the ball late in last Sunday’s game at the Sherman Road turf. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)