Four games, no goals allowed, gold medal.
The ‘03 Vernon Girls United soccer team won the annual Eye of the Storm soccer tournament in Trail, finishing with three wins and one tie.
The final against Kootenay South Selects, the other top team, was a grinding hard-fought affair with few clear scoring chances and both teams feeling the effects of late nights and a lot of soccer in a short period. The tournament isn’t called Eye of the Storm for nothing as thunder and lightning hit with about 15 minutes left to play and the score 0-0.
The game was called and a tie awarded to each team. Game MVP for United went to Sydney Wilson, who was a star all weekend in the holding mid position.
In the round robin format extra points were awarded for fewest goals against, so with Vernon having four clean sheets, the gold went to United. Tournament MVP went to another centre back, Claire Baycroft, who was always steady in and out of possession and showed great poise and skill all weekend.
Vernon opened the tournament against a skilled team from Montana, Flathead Valley FC, beating the Americans 2-0. It took the girls some time to get their legs and spent most of the first half chasing the play. But as the game wore on their physical play helped Vernon gain momentum and begin their possession game. This eventually led to the first of two goals, the first by ‘04 newcomer Skylee Sigurdson-Poirier. Hard-working Jordyn Morris scored the second goal. Another ‘04 newcomer, Paige Maleska, ruled the backline centre half area with some aggressive hard-nosed defending. Game MVP went to keeper Brianna Li, who kept Vernon in the game in the first half.
In Game 2, a 6-0 win over Fernie United, goals came from Morgan Boisvert, Jordyn Morris, Kate McIntosh, Emma Baycroft, Sydney Torrie and Brooklyn Routley. Vernon’s possession game and ball movement exhausted their opponents. Kendall McKinnan, another ‘04, had a great game with calm clinical distribution. Game MVP went to centre back Dilan Sidhu, who, while playing with an injury, was still rock solid in defense and support of possession.
The third game against a determined Nelson Selects was the game of the weekend with both teams getting plenty of scoring chances. Li was instrumental early in keeping the clean sheet. And while Vernon had plenty of scoring opportunities, it was a howitzer from McIntosh from just inside the 18 that was the difference in a 1-0 win. Game MVP went to Routley, who consistently shredded Nelson’s defence. Fullback Abigail King was brilliant all game, working tirelessly and creating numerous opportunities in wide possession.