Whitecaps get first L1BC men’s division victory in five-goal thriller against Harbourside

Whitecaps get first L1BC men’s division victory in five-goal thriller against Harbourside

(Photo Credit: Hazel May/AFTN)

Vancouver Whitecaps’ academy side got their first men’s division win of the new 2024 League1 BC season, coming away with a 3-2 victory in Nanaimo on Saturday afternoon against a battling Harbourside.

As expected, the game started at a high pace, with neither team wishing to give an inch, with barely a shot on goal for the first 19 minutes.

The action picked up, with both sides having looks on goal, but the deadlock was eventually broken a minute into first half stoppage time.

Harbourside keeper Callum Weir had to save a shot from the right side, the loose ball was picked up by an unmarked David Ajagbe for an easy tap in and the Whitecaps went in at the half 1-0 up.

The second half continued in the same fast pace as the first, with Harbourside tying things up in the 68th minute when winger Suka Behery crossed in from the left for Billy Bagiopolous to level the game at 1-1.

Another defensive error by Harbourside allowed substitute Elijah Bean an opportunity to score moments later, but he was denied by Weir, who threw himself at the ball making himself a large target to pull off a spectacular save.

In the 84th minute, in what appeared to be against the run of play, Angelo Zhu played a lovely through ball in to allowed Whitecaps Riley Ferraro to be one-on-one with Weir, this time Weir was unable to block the shot and the Whitecaps restored their lead.

Ferraro got his second of the match three minutes into stoppage time and again it came against the run of play. Whitecaps goalkeeper Ben Alexander sent a long goal kick into the Harbourside half and it was expertly flicked on from Sydney Wathuta for Ferraro to race in on goal and finish past Weir.

Harbourside didn’t give up and got a late consolation goal by Bagiopolous six minutes into stoppage time, reducing the deficit to one again, but there wasn’t enough time left to pull the game around.

FINAL SCORE: Harbourside FC 2 – 3 Vancouver Whitecaps

HARBOURSIDE: Cal Weir; Joseph Ferris Chiari (Cam Shaw 64’), Fergus Hall, Wyatt Lyon; Ashton Bryant (Jonathan McKenzie 61’), Michael Hepelle (Senay Haile 64’), Ben Creswick (Andres Tovar 74’), Yusuf Osman; Billy Bagiopoulos, Charlie Purcell, Suka Behery [Substitutes not used: Matthew Scott, Matthew Coburn, Tristan Cornwall]

VANCOUVER WHITECAPS ACADEMY: Ben Alexander; Sahai Williams (Elijah Bean 69’), Benjamin Lee, Nikos Clarke-Tosczak; Amoni Thomas (Isaac Charbonneau 86’), Cristiano Da Silva, Markus Rukavina (Riley Ferraro 79’), Angelo Zhu; Amir Ghasemi (Mario Lefevre 69’), David Ajagbe (Sydney Wathuta 45’), Matteo Samori (Aidan Fong 45’) [Substitutes not used: Alex Milosevic]




What was the turning point in the match to give his side the victory:

“The turning point was, to be better on the ball in front of their backline. We lacked some precision balancing against their backline, all credit to their defence who made it very difficult.”

Do you think the goal just before half-time influenced your team?

“For sure. I think it was well deserved. We didn’t want to stop. We came back to push and control the game. We are very proud of our boys.”



Thoughts on the match:

“I’m disappointed. I thought we did more than enough to get something out of the game.”

Did you feel some of the calls didn’t fall in your favour?

“It wasn’t that bad. I don’t think that affected our guys at all. They (Whitecaps) have quality, good resources, and train every day. They’re young and quick and we didn’t impose what we wanted to do for the full 90, and at this level you get punished.”


Check out the AFTN Flickr account for John and Hazel May’s photos from the match and our other League1 BC photos.

2024 League1 BC Men: Harbourside FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps (11/05/2024)

Authored by: John May

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