Caps In College: Business end of NCAA season fast approaching, as CIS postseason gets underway
With all the site issues, we didn’t run our Caps In College feature last week, so as we enter November, and things are hotting up for the postseason, we bring you a round up of the Whitecaps and BC related college action from the last fortnight.
It’s already playoff time in the CIS, as the Canada West teams battle it out in Vancouver to see who will represent Western Canada at the CIS Championship in New Brunswick next week. Three BC teams are in the final four and you can follow all the action here on AFTN.
Over in NCAA Division 2, SFU had a mixed road trip and then made their GNAC opposition pay with two 7-0 home victories in a devastating attacking display.
In NCAA Division 1, there were goals for Ben McKendry, Brody Huitema and Quinton Duncan, and two clean sheets from Callum Irving and one from Sean Melvin.
CIS – UBC, UVIC, UFV
The Canada West Final Six tournament got underway on Halloween and you’ll find full coverage here on AFTN.
UBC Thunderbirds are hosts after dropping just one game on their way to wrapping up the Pacific Division title and the number one seeding in all of the CIS.
The Tbirds came off a bye week with an 8-0 away thumping of Lethbridge Pronghorns last Saturday. The game gave UBC the chance to get valuable minutes for some of their fringe players but some of their big hitters also got in on the action with Milad Mehrabi, who has been impressive all season long, grabbing a brace to take his tally to the season to 11. Whitecaps PDL players Harry Lakhan, Niall Cousens and Reynold Stewart all added a goal each to go along with an own goal, a Mitchell Popadynetz strike and a Lucas Reis penalty.
That victory made it 11 wins in a row for UBC, but they were unable to extend that to a dozen the following day, after their match with Calgary Dinos was cancelled.
There was more good news for UBC on Wednesday night when the University swept the board at the annual Canada West mens soccer awards. It was the first time since 2000 that a school has done the complete sweep.
Reynold Stewart deservedly won the Conference MVP after a stellar season that has seen the talented midfielder contribute 8 goals and 5 assists. Stewart is in his final year at UBC and after playing for the Whitecaps PDL team in 2012, it will be interesting to see where the next chapter of his footballing career will be. He can definitely play at a higher level.
Sean Einarsson, who was recently playing for Surrey United Firefighters at the nationals, was named “Rookie of the Year”, whilst defender Paul Clerc won the “Student Athlete Community Service Award”. UBC also picked up the “Fair Play Award”, and unsurprisingly head coach Mike Mosher won the “Coach of the Year”.
Clerc, Einarsson and Stewart were three of the five UBC players named to the “Canada West All-Stars First Team”, along with Niall Cousens and Navid Mashinchi. Three other Thunderbirds – Bryan Fong, Harry Lakhan and Milad Mehrabi – were named to the “Second Team”.
The University of Victoria Vikes had three players named to the All-Stars “First Team” – goalkeeper Elliot Mitrou and defender Andrew Ravenhill, who also play with Victoria Highlanders, and Caps PDL playmaker Cam Hundal.
The Vikes rounded off their regular season with four wins and head into the championship round in fine form.
They won 4-0 against Lethbridge on October 18th and followed that up with a 4-1 win against Calgary the following day, thanks to a Cam Hundal hat-trick. Last Saturday they came through a close game with UNBC 3-2, with Hundal getting another goal, and closed off their regular season on Sunday with a 4-0 win over the same side and another Hundal goal.
NCAA II – SFU
The Simon Fraser University Clan headed to the Dakotas for a two game road trip in Week 8.
With both opponents sitting bottom of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference, a couple of good wins were expected, but the University of Mary Marauders gave the Clan a fright on October 17th in a 2-2 draw which saw the Canadian side have to fight back twice thanks to goals from Joseph Martin and Juan Sanchez.
Two days later the winless South Dakota School of Mines Hardrockers (I wish I was making that up) were made to pay the penalty, as the Clan’s attack exploded for a 7-0 victory. SFU were five up in the first half hour thanks to a Jovan Blagojevic brace, the first just 39 seconds in, and goals from Sanchez, Adam Staschuk and Carlo Basso. Colin Jacques made it six in the 53rd minute, to go along with his three assists on the afternoon, and Basso grabbed his second goal in the final minute, to go with his two assists.
SFU returned home last week and continued their dominance with another two 7-0 victories over hapless opposition.
Northwest Nazarene Crusaders were first to the slaughter on Thursday, with Magnus Kristensen and Ryan Dhillon grabbing a pair apiece, along with goals from Blagojevic, Jacques and Gilbert Kyne. Whitecaps Residency graduate Alex Rowley had two assists.
The goalfest continued on Saturday afternoon when MSU-Billings Yellowjackets came a calling and were handed the same punishment. A Basso brace and goals from Dhillon, Staschuk, Jacques, Chris Bargholz and Tarnvir Bhandal did the damage, whilst Rowley grabbed another assist.
You can see our video of six (well five and a half!) of SFU’s six goal second half in the highlights below:
SFU have their final two home games of the season this week and kicked off with a 1-0 win in the fog over Saint Martin’s Saints on Thursday night thanks to a 69th minute Ryan Dhillon winner.
The Clan wrap up their home season with the big derby game against Seattle Pacific Falcons on Saturday night. Get along if you can, for what is sure to be a fantastic game. Kick off is at 7.30pm and admission is free.
Ben McKendry’s New Mexico Lobos have two wins, over Florida Atlantic and UAB, and an overtime loss at South Carolina in the last two weeks. McKendry played 219 minutes over the three games in a more attacking midfield role. That new role saw him muster nine shots in the three games and a goal in the 4-3 win over Alabama on Wednesday evening. You can see Ben’s goal (New Mexico’s third) below or HERE.
With two games remaining, the Lobos need to beat Old Dominion and Callum Irving’s Kentucky to win Conference USA.
Talking of Callum’s Kentucky, they managed only one win in four, a 2-0 win over Marshall on Wednesday evening. Callum played in all four games, recording two clean sheets. He made six saves in the 1-0 loss to Charlotte, and kept a clean sheet in the 0-0 double overtime draw with Quinton Duncan’s Tulsa University, where he made seven saves. He also played in the 4-1 loss to FIU and kept a clean sheet in the win over Marshall, where he made five saves.
Brody Huitema’s Duke Blue Devils have had two wins and a double overtime draw since we last wrote. Huitema grabbed his sixth of the season when he headed home Duke’s second in the 3-0 win over Elon (you can see the goal below or at http://www.goduke.com//mediaPortal/player.dbml?catid=1002&id=3086339). Brody also picked up an assist on the 1-0 win over Boston College and the 2-2 draw with Wake Forest in his 244 minutes.
Quinton Duncan’s Tulsa had two draws and a loss, with Duncan playing 310 minutes and grabbing the 85th minute opener for the Hurricanes against Marshall.
Declan Rodriguez’s University of Milwaukee Panthers are on a bit of a roll with two wins and a draw. Rodriguez played the full 200 minutes in two of the matches, recording four shots.
Sean Melvin’s University of North Carolina Wilmington side are also doing well, with back to back wins. Melvin kept a clean sheet, with four saves, in the big 1-0 win over North Carolina, and played the second half, giving up an 87th minute goal, in the 2-1 win over Delaware.
Wesley Cain had seven shots in Wright State University’s four games, which saw the Raiders with a win and three losses, two of them coming in overtime.