Women’s Soccer: Hutchinson, Robertson lead Spartans past Cascades
The University of the Fraser Valley women’s soccer team was dealt a second straight loss by the Trinity Western Spartans, falling 3-0 at home on Sunday afternoon.
The U SPORTS No. 2-ranked Spartans – 5-1 winners over the Cascades on Friday in Langley – were led by Rachel Hutchinson and Jenaya Robertson, who notched a goal and an assist apiece. Kathryn Harvey also scored for the Spartans (10-1-1), and Hannah Miller made five saves for the clean sheet.
The Cascades (2-5-5), for their part, turned in a much better performance in the rematch, but were unable to break through offensively despite a strong start.
“Today our mentality was far better,” UFV head coach Rob Giesbrecht said. “I thought we limited their chances – I don’t remember a lot of big saves by our goalkeeper. First half, we forced a few saves and got at them a bit.
“Again, I think we were punished by a couple youthful mistakes – letting players on the wrong side of us inside the penalty area . . . and just not being committed to getting to the ball first on a set piece. Those three things happened, and once we get down to 10 (players in the second half), it’s always going to be tough against one of the top teams in the country. We had a lot of young players out there, and I can’t say enough about how proud I am of them.”
The Cascades started brightly, making several dangerous forays in the first 15 minutes. Senior captain Brittney Zacharuk had the ball on her foot deep in the box, but she had her initial shot and the follow-up effort blocked by TWU defenders.
The Spartans gained traction as the half wore on, and Hutchinson opened the scoring in the 30th minute. She stepped in front of a Cascades pass and ventured forward before firing a shot past UFV keeper Andrea Perkovic into the bottom right corner.
Hutchinson set up the Spartans’ second goal, sending in a corner in the 58th minute that Robertson headed home.
The Cascades’ comeback hopes were dealt a blow in the 68th minute when a Yasmina Enneddam tackle was deemed worthy of a red card. Harvey rounded out the scoring in the 78th, collecting a Robertson cross and slotting a shot into the bottom right corner.
Jessica Fennell had a good look at goal for UFV late in the half, but her drive arced just over the bar.
“I’m pleased that we’ve won at a hard place to play against a hard team to play against,” TWU head coach Graham Roxburgh said.
“Fraser Valley, look, they’re a great team and they’re really well-coached, and they’ve got some very dangerous weapons. I know they probably have a couple injuries like we do. They came out strong and made it really difficult for us with their energy and aggressiveness.”
Katie Lampen picked up player of the game honours for the Cascades, and Giesbrecht lauded the work rate of Kate Fisher who had stints at forward and in the midfield.
The Cascades wrap up the CW regular season at home next weekend, hosting the TRU WolfPack on Friday and the UBC Okanagan Heat on Saturday.
Men’s Soccer: Zanatta’s late strike lifts Cascades past Spartans
For the second straight game, Trevor Zanatta played the hero for the University of the Fraser Valley men’s soccer team, netting a late game-winner to boost the Cascades to a 3-2 victory over the Trinity Western Spartans.
The Spartans had rallied from a 2-0 deficit to knot the score at MRC Sports Complex, but Zanatta came through in the 75th minute, hammering home a shot off a scramble following Atle Koellmel’s sideline throw-in.
It was déjà vu of the best sort for the Cascades – just two nights earlier, Zanatta’s goal in the 76th minute had lifted UFV to victory over TWU in Langley by an identical 3-2 score.
The sophomore from Coquitlam, B.C. is an unlikely hero in terms of goal-scoring – as a holding midfielder, he’s primarily concerned with preventing goals rather than scoring them. This weekend’s goals were just the second and third of his UFV career.
The Cascades’ playoff hopes had been hanging by a thread coming into the home-and-home series with the Trinity Western (7-6-1), but in the wake of a stunning six-point weekend against their local rivals to improve to 5-4-4, they’re now in fourth place in the Pacific Division and control their playoff destiny moving forward.
“Considering I don’t score very much, it means a lot, especially against Trinity,” said Zanatta, trying to wrap his mind around consecutive game-winners. “I don’t know what to say. It’s just awesome.
“Six points against our rivals is just unbelievable. We haven’t had a six-point weekend since last year, and getting it against Trinity is absolutely huge for our playoff run.”
The Cascades got off to a dream start, as Manpal Brar opened the scoring in the first minute of play. Gurmaan Jhaj played the ball ahead to Brar, who powered past a Spartans defender and got in on a breakaway, slotting a shot into the bottom right corner behind TWU keeper Sebastian Colyn.
Jhaj made it 2-0 in the 36th minute. Jehmrode Kahlon set up the goal in spectacular fashion, waltzing around a Spartans defender and feeding Jhaj for the point-blank finish.
TWU gained new life with a timely goal just before the half. Jacob Low played Gordon Grice through as he sprinted down the right wing, and he tucked a shot inside the near post.
In the 61st minute, Low drew a foul in the box on UFV’s Nawaf Binsaleh, and Caleb Johnson stepped to the penalty spot and beat Cascades keeper Ethan Duggan with a shot into the bottom left corner.
Zanatta sent the home crowd into hysterics in the 75th, finishing off a frantic sequence. Koellmel unleashed one of his patented long throws, and Jhaj headed the ball off the crossbar. The ball fell inches from the goal line, and Johnson bicycle-kicked it to momentary safety. But it found Zanatta, who smashed it home on a half-volley from 12 yards out.
“Goal-scoring is not normally Trevor’s forte, but he’s been fantastic,” Cascades head coach Tom Lowndes enthused. “The kid will run through a brick wall, he’ll run for 90 minutes, hard tackle, everything you’d want as a central midfielder . . . I think we’ve fed off of that quite a bit, so really proud of him. But all the boys were fantastic today.
“To take six points off a very, very good team in Trinity Western who were second in the standings is unbelievable. . . . Today definitely wasn’t pretty at times, but we had the hunger, the desire and the work rate to really fight for each other and prove how much we wanted three points. I’m really proud they got it.”
TWU head coach Mike Shearon offered a blunt assessment of his team’s performance.
“One team wanted to win, one team didn’t,” he said. “Bottom line is, Fraser Valley wanted to come out and beat the tar out of us, and that’s what happened.
“They came out, played hard, and we didn’t. We didn’t match their intensity. There were some times when it was nice and we had a bunch of chances, but in the end, they took their chances, we didn’t take ours. They blocked our shots, we didn’t block theirs. And that’s the way it goes.”
The Cascades are back in action next Friday at home vs. the UVic Vikes (8 p.m., MRC Sports Complex), then wrap up the CW regular season on the road Sunday vs. the UBC Thunderbirds.