They had one practice with a new roster so the coaches of Vernon Tolko United U15 boys basically entered the Richmond Thanksgiving Rep Soccer Tournament just for kicks.
The Tolko crew surprised their coaches by collecting a silver medal, falling 3-2 in penalty kicks to Coastal FC on a rain-drenched Sunday afternoon. The two well-matched teams were tied following round-robin play.
It was scoreless in the first half with Coastal grabbing the lead before Vernon responded with Strachan taking a corner that rebounded right back to him. He crossed it over and Marco Erho converted.
Coastal went in front 2-1 before Strachan sent a cross to Acob, who buried a long shot for the late equalizer.
The same two clubs tied 2-2 Saturday morning with Justin Arsenault feeding a solid pass to Erho to put Vernon on the sheet first. While United had strong possession, Coastal levelled the score before the break.
Early in the second half, Alex Kazimer connected with a drive just under the crossbar to give Vernon the lead.
Coastal tied the game in the dying minutes.
United then grounded Vancouver Marpole SC Hawks 3-0 later Saturday.
After a scoreless half, the Vernon boys regrouped and came out firing multiple shots with Landon Janke passing to Mattais Hartman, who powered through some defenders and jumpstarted the offence.
Cam Acob launched one over the top of the keeper and within two minutes, Arsenault unleashed a snipe to complete the offence. Justin Ruscheinsky notched the shutout.
Liam Collins and Jacob Huntington fronted Ruscheinsky in style as Vernon shut down Richmond FC Avengers 4-0 Sunday morning.
Supported by Zach Loland and Declan Hardy in midfield, Carter Leahy converted a cross over the keeper’s head for the 1-0 goal. Leahy struck again 10 minutes later, finishing a solid cross from Tyson Kamstra. Jonah Strachan and Ronan Hinds supported the midfield while Hartman sent a well-placed corner deflected in by Kazimer late in the first half.
The second half featured a lot of strong possession play until the last minute when Janke’s corner shot curved in off the keeper.