George White, known as “Ronaldinho of Cowichan” in some circles, does some work in the midfield for the Cowichan Fury last Saturday. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

George White, known as “Ronaldinho of Cowichan” in some circles, does some work in the midfield for the Cowichan Fury last Saturday. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

Schedule change causes trouble for Cowichan LMG

Soccer team short players for rescheduled match against Comox

A scheduling change put Cowichan LMG in a rough spot.

The Div. 1 men’s soccer team had been preparing for a home date against Lakehill last Friday, but with conditions on the Malahat unpredictable, the Vancouver Island Soccer League switched some things around, and Cowichan ended up visiting Comox Valley United on Saturday.

Several players who would have been available for the Friday match had to beg out of Saturday’s game, leaving the team with just 11 players, including backup goalkeeper Taylor Joe, who ended up playing a full 90 minutes at left wing. Matters were compounded when Blaze Roberts went down to an injury 25 minutes into the game.

“We were the better team before he went down,” Cowichan coach Ryan Flynn said. “Just playing with 11 guys is hard enough. Going down to 10 is worse.

“It was one of those games where we didn’t have enough players and it showed. A lot of it falls on me not being able to get enough players.”

Flynn did what he could to track down more players, but Div. 3 Cowichan Oak FC was playing the same night, and had already called on five O35 players, leaving none available for his team.

In the end, Cowichan lost 5-1 to a team they beat 4-1 last time they met, a month and a half ago. It was only the third win on the season for Comox, who had been outscored 24-10 in their previous nine matches.

Cowichan was down 3-0 before Mateo Kostering scored in the 77th minute. The club suffered back-to-back defeats for the first time this season, and has now gone three games without a win. With five wins, two draws and three losses on the season, Cowichan is now tied with Vic West for third in Div. 1.

LMG will visit Victoria Highlanders FC this Saturday 6 p.m.

“They beat us the first game of the year, so we’ll be looking for a little redemption,” Flynn said. “Hopefully things work out.”

In Div. 3, Alex Smith scored four times as Cowichan Oak FC beat Nanaimo United 5-2 in Nanaimo on Saturday. Brandon Tolfo also scored as The Oak got back in the win column after a loss to Prospect Lake the previous week ended a three-game winning streak. Smith now has 13 goals on the season to lead Div. 3, while his team is tied for fourth in pool B with five wins, two draws and four losses.

The Oak will play at home against Vic West Wanderers on the Sherman Road turf this Saturday at 4 p.m.

In Div. 4, the Cowichan Fury played to a 3-0 loss to Nanaimo United at home last Saturday. Sitting eighth in pool A, the Fury will play host to Castaways Invicta on the Keserich grass pitch this Saturday at 6 p.m.

There were no games at all in the O35 division last week. This week, the Cowichan 49ers are home to Gorge FC on the Sherman Road turf Saturday at 6 p.m., followed by the Steelheads playing host to JDF Pacific at 8 p.m.

All Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association games were also cancelled last weekend. The three local teams are all on the road this week, with Cowichan United visiting Peninsula and NIFA Pacific visiting Lakehill on Friday, and the Cowichan Cougars visiting Castaways on Saturday.