The Vernon United Under 13 girls will carry the top seed in the Thompson Okanagan Rep Soccer League playoffs this weekend in Kamloops.
United, coached by Al Gee, bounced the Kamloops Blaze 3-1 Sunday at Marshall Field #4 to win the league at 7-0-2.
Dannika Roy was unstoppable with two goals and numerous attacks down the right flank. Alex Lockwood buried a beautiful strike from 22 yards out and was solid in midfield.
Kalli Hamilton-Gee enjoyed a strong game in midfield, winning tackles and distributing well to the frontrunners. Alyssa Racine played goal for the first time ever and did a great job with huge support from the back four.
“With keeper Shauna Bradley injured, our d-line had to really tighten up holding off a hustling Kamloops side,” said Gee.
United takes on the Penticton Pinnacles in the first round of playdowns at McArthur Island Sports Centre.
The Vernon United Under 14 girls will also carry No. 1 ranking in the Thompson Okanagan Rep Soccer League playoffs this weekend in Kamloops.
Super sniper Caleigh Graham scored a deuce as United ambushed host Revelstoke Avalanche 5-0 Sunday at Queen Elizabeth Park.
Ashley Glinsbockel, Millie Harron and Ailish Curran, with her first of the season, completed the United offence. Marina Dempsey registered the shutout as United finished at 9-1-2.
“It was a well played, controlled game by Vernon throughout,” said United head coach Michelle Hughes.
Graham and Glinsbockel supplied goals as United blanked Kelowna United 2-0 Wednesday night at Beasley Park in Lake Country. Dempsey earned the clean sheet.
United U16 girls ended up second at 4-1-4 after a solid 3-3 draw with league-leading Kelowna at Parkinson #8 Rec Field.
Aryana Jacura, Hannah Love and Tamara Andronik, in the last minute of play, handled the offence for John Hughes’ crew.
The U15 girls capped an undefeated 7-0-1 season by blanking Kamloops 5-0 Sunday and shutting down the Pinnacles 3-0 Saturday, both at Marshall.
Brett Bandy’s bunch gave up just two goals while earning six shutout wins.
Kate Healy delivered the winner against the Blaze after a nifty feed from Reyhanna Akkurt. Vicky Grahn made it 2-0 by picking off an errant keeper kick and racing past a defender.
Akkurt completed the offence on a nice tap-in after a pass from Emilee Kronbauer. Emma Eyford was tireless for United.
Kronbauer one-timed a bouncing ball for United’s opening strike Sunday, while Akkurt went coast to coast for a beauty, assisted by Maya Bandy.
Alexa Tymkiw intercepted a goal kick and powered it past the keeper for the 3-0 tally, while Lydia Wood sweetly curled in a corner like a comma and Maddy Laranjo nicely dangled and converted from Akkurt.
The playoff winners advance to the Provincial B Cup championships, July 4-7, in North Vancouver.
United U12 girls #1 showed great improvement Sunday in Salmon Arm as they lost 3-1 to Kamloops Blaze and 3-1 to Kelowna Red
Vernon’s defensive corps of Megan Sherwood, Talia Quiring, Emilia Durfeld, and Carly Southham played as a tight unit, shutting down the Blaze’s attack for most of the first half. At the other end of the pitch, constant pressure by Vernon resulted in a goal by Kelsey Carriere, with Julia Thompson providing the assist. A deflection from a Vernon player helped Kamloops equalize just before half time.
In Game 2, Vernon’s early push paid off with the first goal of the match from a Thompson long shot.
Creative movement in the middle of the field, and tic-tac-toe play by midfielders Durfeld, Grace Atkins and Olivia Sawka applied constant pressure.
Keeper Danica Ariano was on her game in the first half, but Kelowna gained a lucky bounce for the 1-1 tally after a stellar save by Ariano. United’s never-say-die attitude was impressive, led by forward Keira Correias, who had her best showing of her season.
United #2 U11 girls extended their undefeated streak to 11 games by drawing 2-2 with Kelowna White and clipping previously unbeaten Kelowna Black 3-2 Sunday in Salmon Arm.
Inspired defensive play by Sienna Belanger, Nadia Smith, Elliana Gutknecht and Emily Sorochuk kept the game versus Kelowna White within reach until the offence perked up.
Kelowna led 2-0 at the break. After a neat four-way passing play up the left side, Olivia McLennan finished a beauty and the game was on. Pouring the pressure on, Kelsey Falk, Thomas and McLennan worked the ball into the 18 with Lynley Gordon-Mason getting the equalizer running the ball and herself into the net.
In Game 2, United fell behind before Elena Gaskell tied it with a hard corner.
Vernon keeper Hailey Yablonski made some marvellous diving saves with United trailing 2-1 at the half.
McLennan levelled the score with a determined shot which careened off a Kelowna defender. Thomas again took the spotlight and converted the winner for the second week in a row.
United U14 boys dismantled the Kamloops Blaze Blue 6-2 Sunday at Marshall #5 to finish the regular schedule at 2-4-2.
The floodgates opened early when Owen Burnet converted his second penalty kick of the year after Shey Townley was taken down in the 18.
Kamloops caught a break when a shot skipped on the hard area in front of the Vernon goal and eluded keeper Morgan Nichols in the net.
United came back with a vengeance as Malcolm Wiens torched the Kamloops right back with speed and deftly tucked the ball across for Townley to nicely deposit.
Wiens then converted a Reed Cashato pass to put Vernon up 3-1 and a few minutes later, Elias Jensen added the fourth. Kamloops snuck back into the game with a penalty kick just before the half.
Wiens added his third of the afternoon to round out the scoring.
The back line of Peter Hirschkorn, Sam Eggert, Wyatt Carter, Nichols and Connor London was solid, while Gavin Mason and Charis Ondrik ruled the center midfield.
Rowan McDonald, Connor Johnston, Kevin Thibault and Cam MacKenzie had solid games on the flanks and Connor Holliday up front. Vernon faces Penticton Pinnacles in first-round playoff action Saturday in Kamloops.
The U16 boys drew 2-2 with host Revelstoke after falling 5-2 to Kelowna.
Mike Melbourne’s crew led Kelowna 2-1 at the half Saturday at MacDonald Park, but ran out of gas. Michael Williamson and Zac Kronbauer scored for United.
In Revelstoke, Bryce Dyck, coming off the back line, scored in his new striker position. Defender Shayne Groeneveld then buried a nice header off a Liam Ross set penalty kick. United plays Kamloops in first-round playoff action Saturday.
The U13 boys ended the regular season by ambushing the Shuswap Selects 7-0 Sunday at Marshall Field.
United was bold on and off the ball as they clinched second place. Goals came from Ben Purvis, Perez Vermeulen, Daniel Paskiewich, Adam Murdoch, Bryce Turner, Dylan Huber and Adam Raber.
The Les Sinnott Memorial Boys Provincial B Cup goes July 4-7, in Prince George.
United boys U11 #2 shaded Kelowna White 2-1 and Kamloops Orange 3-2 Sunday in Kamloops.
Liam Glennon opened the scoring early versus Kelowna with a great strike on a lovely through ball from Josh McKeown. Vernon went up 2-0 on a fantastic feed from Kobe Grant and brilliant finish by James Meeks.
Makism Chirkoff and Aiden Skinner were great on the wings and Glennon shut down the midfield and was the Boston Pizza Man of the Match.
United came out flat and were in tough against Kamloops until Glennon danced around three defenders and placed a great shot. Kamloops countered a few minutes later, but Grant put Vernon up 2-1 on a great strike on a pass from Matt Reich. Kamloops levelled things before Reich’s shot rebounded to the goal line where Nate Paskiewich tapped it in for the win. Tysen Fairweather, Gavin Medema and Burger King Man of the Match McKeown shut down numerous Kamloops counters.
United boys U11 #1 rang up victories in Kamloops, first edging the resilient Penticton Pinnacles 3-2 and then overmatching Kamloops Orange 9-0.
Zach Smith opened the scoring versus Penticton on a nice pass from Zach Manthorne. After the Pinnacles replied on a deflection, Red Robin Man of the Match Liam Reid placed a gorgeous 30-metre chip over the keeper for his fifth long-range blast of the year. Isaiah Ondrik broke down the right flank and scored the winner.
Kevin Morgan was stellar in goal, and Luc Jones and Devin Hofsink provided quality minutes all over the park.
Vernon displayed its firepower against Kamloops with Ondrik pulling the hat trick, with Smith, Morgan, Dawson Martian, Joel Kongsdorf, Reid and Jones, on a beautiful free kick, adding singles. Devin Hofsink recorded the shutout.