November 2nd, 2014
Follow all the action LIVE on the CCAA Women's Soccer nationals website
Go Mariners !!!
VIU one win away from national final
Women's squad wins opener 4-0
Scott McKenzie / Daily News
November 6, 2014
If they can win today, the VIU Mariners will play for women's soccer national gold. They made sure of that yesterday with a decisive 4-0 win over the tournament host Medicine Hat College Rattlers.
"They were really focused," said Mariners head coach Anup Kang.
"We came out and we weren't nervous or anything like that, and we competed."
The Mariners, ranked as the No. 3 team in the country, stormed out to a 3-0 lead in the first half against the Rattlers and didn't look back.
Nanaimo product Madison Dawson, a freshman at VIU, put the Mariners on the board first before All-Canadian junior forward Bronte Fitzsimmons scored to double her team's lead.
With the Mariners up 2-0 and still in the first half, sophomore defender Zoe Grace, of Saskatoon, added another VIU goal to give her team a 3-0 lead.
"We came out really strong and took the game to them," Kang said. "We knew how they played and we pressured them early and created some turnovers, which resulted in some chances and some goals for us."
After their early barrage of goals, the Mariners went into lock-down mode, shutting the Rattlers out the rest of the game with senior goalkeeper Shelby Walker picking up a shutout.
"They were ready to play," Kang said of his team, "and they were anxious to play because we've been here for two days now, so it's nice to get this one out of the way."
With the tournament's quick format, the Mariners are now preparing for the national semifinal game, a 4:30 p.m. match with the No. 2 CÃ©gep Garneau Elans today.
Garneau began the tournament Wednesday in dominant fashion with a 7-2 win over the No. 7 Langara Falcons.
Speaking with the Daily News Wednesday evening, Kang said he had yet to see Garneau in action, other than from a bit of online viewing.
"We've got video on them and we've had another coach scouting them for us, so I'll have enough once I talk to them," Kang said.
"From what we've heard, they've very explosive. They have some really fast players on the wings and up the middle.
"We'll come up with a game plan and we'll give it our best shot."
If the Mariners can get by Garneau tomorrow, they will play the national championship on Saturday at 3:30 p.m., with their opponent to be determined but likely to be the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology Ooks.
If the Mariners fall today against Garneau, they'll play for bronze at 2 p.m. Saturday.
But that is looking too far into the future.
For Kang, he is focused on playing, and beating Garneau today.
"I think, if we come out and do the right things, we'll have a really good chance against them," he said.