Men's soccer squeaks by UBCO for perfect weekend

The UBC Thunderbirds men’s soccer team upped the winning streak to four games this weekend with a nail-biting 2-1 win over the UBC Okanagan Heat at Thunderbird Stadium on Saturday night.

The Thunderbirds notched the first goal of the game early when forward Gagan Dosanjh sent a left-footed strike past the Heat’s keeper and into the bottom right corner of the net just before the nine minute mark. Dosanjh now sits as UBC’s leading scorer this season. 

UBC Okanagan worked to counter attack quickly but with no success. All shots, including a breakaway by Heat player Cole Kingzett, were stopped by T-Birds goalie Chad Bush keeping the game 1-0 for the ‘Birds going into half-time.

Some quick passing from the Heat early in the second half and a goalkeeping fumble after a scramble for the ball in the box led to the first goal for the opposition. This caused a change of pace for both teams setting up for a fast-paced and rougher second half. 

With seconds to go in the match, Thunderbirds substitute Kerman Pannu scored the game winner after some quick ball movement and a pass from teammate Jules Chopin ending the game with a 2-1 scoreline in favour of the ‘Birds. 

Although the boys managed a win, coach Mike Mosher felt the team could have played much better than they had this past weekend.

“The overall weekend we just weren’t as sharp. We just weren’t connecting our passes, we weren’t combining with each other as much as I would have liked.... Maybe this weekend was a small step backwards or we kind of flatlined. But at the end of the day, we got our six points right at the death today. When you play fairly average and still get the six points, it’s not a bad thing.”

When asked what the team will be doing to learn from past games — especially with many first-year students joining the roster this season — Mosher said it’s a process of trying to figure out how the team best fits together.

“It’s kind of halfway through [the season]. We’ve got enough pieces, and it’s still trying to figure out how those pieces fit together best.”

“When we’ve got a lot of new faces, it’s for them to get to know and play with each other on the field and also off the field,” Mosher said. “There’s many ways to skin the cat here, and that’s what we need to look at a little bit ... look at some other possibilities rather than getting stuck in the same old same old time and again.”

The ‘Birds, currently sitting second in the CIS Pacific Division, will look to keep their winning streak going into back-to-back matches next weekend at the University of Northern British Columbia.