Weekend rundown: Close competition all around with rival teams

Women’s hockey and soccer split their weekend matchups with Calgary and Victoria while men's soccer shutout the Vikes twice in two days.

Welcome back to Weekend Rundown, your place to stay up to date with all of the different Thunderbirds teams!

The T-Birds battled close with the Dinos all weekend.
The T-Birds battled close with the Dinos all weekend. Salomon Micko Benrimoh

Women’s hockey split weekend with Calgary

Friday night at Doug Mitchell Arena saw the Thunderbirds women’s hockey team play their home opener against the visiting University of Calgary Dinos. While the 153 fans in attendance on Friday’s game didn’t get to witness the T-Birds’ first win of the season, as Calgary claimed the win 2–1 in overtime, they were in for a long and entertaining game.

The match was pushed into double-overtime after a dramatic Calgary goal by Delaney Frey, with eight seconds left on the clock in the third period. The game was ended by Calgary’s Elizabeth Lang three minutes into the second overtime period.

Chanreet Bassi was the lone UBC goal scorer, netting her first as a Thunderbird. Bassi was an offensive force this game, generating multiple offensive chances. The evenly matched teams both struggled with fundamental errors throughout the game. One of the Thunderbirds repeated struggles was keeping consistent possession of the puck in the offensive end.

Both teams had multiple ill-timed penalties. Frey’s goal was scored on the heels of UBC’s Kenzie Robinson’s interference call that left the Thunderbirds down a player in the dying minutes of the final period. UBC’s Mikayla Ogrodniczuk remained on for the entirety of the penalty kill.

In the second game of the weekend-series on Saturday evening, UBC had an answer for the visiting Dinos. Veteran Thunderbirds goalie Tory Micklash faced 22 shots and secured her first shut-out of the year. Despite out-shooting the Dinos in the first period, UBC didn’t make it onto the scoreboard until the second period when Tiffany Chiu opened the scoring.

She was followed by Orgodniczuk and in the third Hannah Koroll. UBC was able to find a solution for their possession issues in the second game as they dominated the Dinos in control. UBC would end the game with a 3–0 win, giving them a 1–2–1 record for the year so far.

UBC's Victory Shumbusho plays for the ball in Vikes territory.
UBC's Victory Shumbusho plays for the ball in Vikes territory. Aman Sridhar

T-Birds men’s soccer dominate UVic Vikes with two shutouts

The UBC Thunderbirds men’s soccer team proved once more to be the class of Canada West, as they dominated the University of Victoria Vikes in every aspect of the Saturday’s game and finished the game with a 4–0 victory.

The win ups their record to 9–1–3 and their 30 total points now provide them an eight-point first-place cushion in the Pacific Division.

The Vikes kicked off to begin the first half, but it was the T-Birds who struck first as third-year defender Jackson Farmer volleyed the ball off the top bar in just the first minute of play. The score came off of a Riley Pang throw in from deep in the Vikes’ territory.

Pang was everywhere in the first half. The fourth-year defender assisted on that first score and then himself scored in the 27th minute off a cross from fellow defender Jordan Haynes. Pang also made some great defensive plays and helped the ’Birds dominate the first half time of possession with crisp passing. Ultimately, the ’Birds went into the half leading the opposition 2–0.

The Vikes began to show signs of life early in the second half, but they were simply outmatched. UBC out-shot UVic by an outstanding 17–2 (13–1 on goal) total and the ’Birds ended up with six more corner kicks than the Vikes. UVic’s fifth-year goalkeeper Jas Lally played admirably and totalled 9 saves, but simply could not keep everything out of the net.

In the 72nd minute, Lally made an outstanding diving save off of a Mihai Hodut shot, but second-year midfielder Thomas Gardner quickly gathered the rebound and struck it into the empty net to make the score 3–0. First-year midfielder Logan Chung scored just four minutes later, taking a cross from the left side in the middle of the box and striking it past Lally into the top right corner, taking us to our final score of 4–0.

With only two regular season games remaining, the ’Birds look primed to clinch the top seed heading into this year’s playoff tournament, which begins on October 26. The way the ’Birds have been playing, UBC men’s soccer fans should be very optimistic about this year’s tournament.

The Vikes came back with a vengeance in the second game of the weekend.
The Vikes came back with a vengeance in the second game of the weekend. File Salomon Micko Benrimoh

Vikes come back to beat women’s soccer in second game

Despite Friday’s 1–0 victory against rivals the University of Victoria Vikes, the UBC Thunderbirds women’s soccer team lost 3–1 in the second leg of the Legends Cup.

The T-Birds underperformed in the first half and the Vikes took centre stage with their determined and creative attacks. Vikes forward Trinity Kettyls headed in the first goal for the opponent after receiving a cross from Vikes midfielder Kyra Teetzen in the 23rd minute. T-Birds forward Alyssa Hunt almost made it even with a header in the subsequent UBC corner, but the ball was saved by Vikes goalie Puck Louwes.

While UBC’s defenders had made a name for themselves this Canada West season, their performance against the Vikes was an anomaly. Ever eager to reclaim possession in the opponent’s half, the Vikes’ aggressive pressing caused the T-Birds defenders to make mistakes. In the 29th minute, Vikes forward Kiara Kibley broke away with the ball after winning her interception from a UBC centre back and made it two for the Vikes. The T-Birds failed to get one back before half time.

The T-Birds made three substitutions before the second half started, among them the energetic Michelle Jang. Wanting to maintain their advantage, the Vikes dropped back. UBC was the better team in the second half, with the team’s new forwards giving UVic’s defenders a hard time. The blue and gold almost scored their first goal in the 60th minute but the long shot from UBC forward Amelia Crawford hit the post instead.

Vikes goalie Puck Louwes had an excellent save against a long shot from T-Birds midfielder Sophie Damian in the 72nd minute. Two minutes later, UBC forward Jang scored after an assist from Anisha Sangha, making it 1-2.

T-Birds fans desperately hoped for an equalizer. That was crushed in the 84th minute when Vikes forward Kiara Kilbey stole the ball from a UBC defender and scored her second goal. The game ended 1-3 to UVic’s favour.

“The first half was the worst half we’ve had all season,” said head coach Jesse Symons. “The mindset was poor. Structure was poor.”

“Second half though, I think the players that went in wanted to dig us out of the hole and they were on their way. They had a great mindset. We started to look like how we usually are and unfortunately, UVic made a couple good saves. We made one mistake and they made the game out of reach,” Symons added.