UFV’s Rajan Bains splits a pair of UNBC defenders during Canada West action on Friday. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)

UFV’s Rajan Bains splits a pair of UNBC defenders during Canada West action on Friday. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)

Cascades soccer teams prepare for playoffs

Men’s, women’s teams begin Canada West title drive

Regina is the next stop for the UFV Cascades men’s soccer team, as they open the Canada West quarter-finals on Saturday against the Saskatchewan Huskies.

The club clinched a playoff spot on home field on Friday night, blanking the UNBC Timberwolves 1-0 with a dramatic goal by Andrew Peat in second-half injury time.

Peat headed home a perfect cross from Parman Minhas to guarantee a spot for the men, who return to the playoffs after missing in 2017.

“When you score a 90th-minute winner, it’s a fantastic way to win a game – there’s nothing better,” stated Cascades head coach Tom Lowndes. “But I thought we deserved it tonight. We were really good for large parts of the game

… . We just couldn’t seem to put one away. It’s a credit to this team that they have that fight and belief that we’ll keep going until the last minute of the game.”

The Cascades continued the late-game heroics against UNBC on Saturday, as Gurmaan Jhaj converted on a penalty kick late in the game to give UFV a 2-2 draw. David Parfett scored UFV’s first goal.

The pair of results left the Cascades with a final record of 7-6-2, good for third in the Pacific division. The playoff game against Saskatchewan kicks off at 5 p.m. Abbotsford time on Saturday.

The two teams’ lone meeting this year saw UFV defeat the Huskies 1-0 in Abbotsford on Sept. 21. The Huskies finished with a record of 6-6-2 and ended up in second place in the Prairie division.

It was also a successful weekend for the Cascades women’s team, as they picked up a win and a tie en route to qualifying for the playoffs. The women picked up an impressive 2-0 win over the Victoria Vikes on the road on Friday, with Brittney Zacharuk potting both goals.

“Brittany has been on fire this year,” Giesbrecht noted. “She has really stepped up her game this season and has led by example. She has been outstanding for us and her second goal tonight showed how she has developed into a strong finisher.”

Zacharuk ended up with nine goals on the season, tied for second overall in the Canada West.

The Cascades then traveled to UBC and played the Thunderbirds to a 2-2 draw on Saturday. The club trailed 2-0 at halftime, but Mackenzie Silbernage came up huge for UFV in the second half with a pair of goals.

The women finished with a record of 5-5-4 and placed fifth in the Pacific. They now square off against the Mount Royal University Cougars on Thursday at Langley’s Trinity Western University. That game kicks off at 6:30 p.m.

The two teams met in Abbotsford back on Oct. 12, with the Cascades earning a 1-0 win.

For more on all the teams, visit ufvcascades.ca.