Longtime backline anchors for Cowichan LMG and now the Cowichan 49ers, Tyler Hughes and Jesse (The Mayor) Winter worked their magic together once again as the Niners knocked off the UVic Alumni 3-2 in O35 men’s soccer action at the Sherman Road turf last Saturday.
Hughes set up a header by Winter for Cowichan’s second goal of the night, then scored directly from a corner kick for the eventual game-winner.
“He’s on quite a roll,” 49ers striker/coach Neall Rowlings said of Hughes. “Three goals, three games. And every time the goalie is shocked and injured. He just sees things we don’t.”
UVic went into the match undefeated, but the 49ers were ready for them.
“We knew how UVic was going to play, and prepared for it,” Rowlings noted. “They move a ball very well back and forth and connect through Will Moore who is an amazing centre midfielder. Ex-Cowichan keeper Rob McIntyre before this game had conceded zero goals and we were not going to allow that to continue.”
Richard Lord opened the scoring for Cowichan in the 30th minute with a top-corner shot from the top of the 18. Winter made it 2-0 just after halftime before UVic finally got on the board. Hughes again staked the Niners to a two-goal lead with the goal that stood up as the winner when UVic added one more with five minutes left to play.
“We moved around the formation for game management and held on to a big win,” Rowlings said. “George (Hagi) Thomas came back for his first game and was relentless in the centre of the park. All in all, it was a quality team win and we will continue to build off of that. We head down to gorge next week for what is always a tight physical game.”
With two wins and a draw so far this season, the 49ers will head to Hampton Park this Saturday to face Gorge FC.
The Cowichan Steelheads suffered their first loss of the season on Friday night, falling 3-2 to Vic West at Finlayson turf. Vic West opened the scoring, but Yuta Yamato replied for the Steelheads and the teams went to the break tied at one apiece. Vic West went up by two before Daniel Hudson made it close again for the Steelheads with 16 minutes left to play.
The Steelheads will visit JDF Pacific at Royal Bay Secondary this Saturday.