BC Provincial Cups Finals Day: Surrey United claim back to back trophies, as Richmond All Blacks prevent VMSL clean sweep
Langford, Greater Victoria played host to a busy BC Provincial Cup Finals Day on Saturday.
West Hills Stadium and Goudy Field were the venues for the four Men’s and four Women’s finals and although the games didn’t throw up the same excitement and tensions as last year’s finals, there was still some good action and performances on display.
It was a great day for Vancouver Metro Soccer League (VMSL) sides, who won three of the four Mens finals and lost out in the other.
It was also another great afternoon for Surrey United, with both their Men and their Women once again lifting the A Cup trophies.
In an all VMSL final, Surrey United Firefighters came through an expectedly close Men’s A Cup final, with a 1-0 win over long time rivals West Van FC.
The game got off to an explosive start with West Van reduced to ten men just three minutes in when Drew Gelley was sent off for a last man tackle in the box.
Colin Streckmann stepped up and coolly slotted home the penalty for what was to prove to be the match winning goal.
You’d have got good odds on the game not finishing with a single goal scoreline but that was how it played out, despite West Van battling back well even with their numerical disadvantage and looking the more dangerous side.
They pushed hard for the equaliser and were given the perfect opportunity to draw level in the 54th minute when Justin Wallace was brought down in the box by Joseph Martin, but former Whitecap Paul Dailly’s spot kick was saved by Andrew Fink in the Surrey goal.
West Van just couldn’t find a way through and Surrey United Firefighters became the first back to back A Cup winners since Victoria Gorge in 2001 and 2002.
One of the key players in Surrey’s road to the Cup was former Whitecap Jeff Clarke, who is Technical Director at the club and scored the winning goal in the semi final, and we caught up with Jeff to get his thoughts on the game with West Van.
“The final was an interesting test. With West Van getting the red card so early it actually caused us more issues than it solved. We found it very difficult to adjust with the extra man and they were unlucky not to get an equalizer.
“It has been a very busy last 12 months for the team. With us competing at nationals in October and then Rob Reed replacing Niall Thompson in November, plus losing some veterans and starters from the year before the team had every excuse to have an off year. Coach Reed did a great job of keeping everything in perspective throughout the season and had us primed for Provincial Cup.”
Surrey now head to the CSA club nationals again and look to lift The Challenge Trophy in Halifax in October and repeat the feat of Vancouver Firefighters’ 1990 Championship win, which also came in Nova Scotia.
Richmond All Blacks won the Keith Millar B Cup, with a comprehensive 5-0 hammering of VMSL side Sarajevo FC.
Sarajevo had been playing with a reduced squad throughout the competition and it finally took it’s toll against a rampant Richmond side.
Leading 1-0 at the half thanks to a goal from Justin Hebner, the All Blacks turned up the heat in the second and a brace from Daniel Tait and goals from player-manager Kyle Shury and Mat Campbell saw them lift the trophy and repeat their triumphs from 2005 and 2009.
Columbus FC of the VMSL ran out easy 4-0 winners over FVSL side North Delta SC Rangers in the Deryl Hughes Mens Masters Cup final, with goals from Craig Richards, Salvatore Cuccione, Vito Lore and Scott Walters. Columbus now head to the Westerns in Saskatchewan in September.
There was a dramatic end to the all VMSL Doug Day Mens U21 Cup final, Guildford FC lifting the trophy with a close 1-0 win over West Van FC. Adam Karrasch volleyed home the winner four minutes into stoppage time, with the game looking set to go to extra time.
On the Women’s side, Surrey United won their 10th consecutive A Cup with a hard fought 1-0 win over North Shore GSC Renegades, with Chelsey Hannesson scoring the only goal of the game. An incredible achievement for the Surrey side going back to 2004.
In the Women’s B Cup, Burnaby Selects ran out 2-1 winners over island side Gorge FC, thanks to Kate Sequin’s 68th minute winner and despite playing most of the second half with ten women.
Gorge FC also lost the Women’s Classic game, going down 3-0 to Coastal FC Supra, whilst Langley United won the Women’s U21 final 3-2 over Central City Breakers United.
With the eight finals now over for another year, Kjeld Brodsgaard, Chair of the BC Soccer Adult Competitions Committee, was happy with how the Finals Day had gone:
“It was a wonderful day’s soccer in Langford at the Westhills Stadium and Goudy Field with great crowd and superb soccer. The event was a credit to all those players, coaches, officials and volunteers who took part and special thanks should go to the Vancouver Island Soccer League and Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association who acted as put local organising committee and put on a great show”.
Congratulations to all the winners and good luck to Surrey United Firefighters and Columbus FC when they go on to represent BC at the nationals and westerns later on in the year.