North Enderby Timber stopped Turn-Key Controls’ 10-game winning streak at a most opportune time Sunday night at Marshall Field #2.
With the sidelines packed with spectators, NET shaded Turn-Key 2-1 in a thrilling and spirited Gibson Cup final. Both teams ended the regular North Okanagan Soccer League season with 13 wins, the Timber claiming first by one point.
Turn-Key opened the scoring in the 10th minute after Nolan’s Pharmasave Man of the Match Sam Nolan fired the strike of his career past Timber keeper Danny Stein, off both posts before trickling in just over the line.
Turn-Key forced a few more minutes of pressure in the first half but the Timber maintained calm and played a very in-control half which resulted in a majority of possession and a number of close opportunities that were squandered in the final few yards.
Corey Wallis, in the 38th minute levelled the score after hammering a volley off a Brodie Couch corner, past Turn-Key’s Jeremy Kler.
NET veteran Graham Ross received his second yellow card of the night 12 minutes into the second half, and was ejected. The Timbermen changed up their formation and focused on a more defensive style. That resulted in zero opportunities for Turn-Key and a much more simple style of play by NET.
Corey Wallis gave the Timber the lead in the 63rd minute after he was hacked down inside the 18-yard box, resulting in a penalty kick. He calmly slid the ball past Kler who guessed the wrong direction. Kler will be playing goal for the UBCO Heat soccer team and also suiting up for the volleyball side this season.
About seven minutes later, Turn-Key midfielder Evan Moore was ejected after his second yellow. NET coach John Farina was also tossed for arguing a call.
Despite a late charge from Turn-Key, the Controls were unable to get their equalizer past Stein who was aggressive all night in cutting off through balls.
“We won because we played smart,” said NET veteran defender Andy Stein. “It took us all year to get to this point but the whole squad was on the same page for the win. We were solid from front to back.”
Referee was Jasmain Parr, while his assistants were Cyrus Tabar and Nathan Gatenby.