Kevin Smith and the Cowichan Steelheads are preparing for the local derby against the Cowichan 49ers this Saturday at 8 p.m. (Citizen file)

Kevin Smith and the Cowichan Steelheads are preparing for the local derby against the Cowichan 49ers this Saturday at 8 p.m. (Citizen file)

Masters teams both looking to get back in the win column

The Cowichan Steelheads suffered their third straight loss last weekend as they were edged 1-0 by the Fernwood Dragons in O35 men’s soccer action at Finlayson turf on Sunday afternoon.

The Steelheads held off Fernwood until the 68th minute of the match, and were unable to counter with a goal of their own before time expired.

Cowichan’s other masters team, the 49ers, had the weekend off to rest up for the local derby this Saturday at 8 p.m. on the Sherman Road turf.

The two Cowichan teams played to a 3-3 draw last time they met. The Steelheads got two goals from Travis Brown and one from Nick Zuback, while the 49ers got one each from Stu (Shake and Bake) Barker, Ryan Fusick and Tyler Hughes. Brown is now tied for the league lead with five goals, while Barker sits one back at four. Niners goalkeeper Darian Achurch is second in the league with two shutouts.

The 49ers sit atop the O35A table with four wins, one draw and one loss, while the Steelheads are sixth with one win, two draws and four losses. Both teams are coming off defeats and will be hungry to get back in the win column.

“Overall the 49ers will have a strong lineup, with Tyler Hughes and George Thomas returning the field,” said Neall Rowlings, who will have his hands full and feet busy as player-coach for the 49ers and manager of both Cowichan teams.

Rowlings noted that his team typically plays home games at 6 p.m., but the 49ers will have to stay up a little later this time.

“Eight p.m. is their home time,” he said. “We are usually in bed by then.”

soccer