The early season struggles continued for the UFV Cascades men’s soccer team, as the club dropped a pair of games at home on Friday and Saturday.
The Cascades welcomed the number-one ranked and defending national champion Alberta Golden Bears on Friday, but couldn’t get on the scoreboard and fell 1-0.
Alberta scored in the 19th minute and despite five shots in the second half, UFV failed to generate offence.
“It was obviously a little bit frustrating in the second half – I thought for a good 25 or 30 minutes we were on top and had some chances,” UFV head coach Tom Lowndes said. “If we could take one of those chances, maybe the game turns on its head a little bit. But for us to come off the field and be disappointed to only lose 1-0 to the No. 1 team in the nation, the reigning national champions? I’m really proud of the effort tonight.”
It was a similar story for the men’s team on Saturday, as the Cascades were blanked by the Calgary Dinos 2-0.
Lowndes said the offensive conversion just wasn’t there.
“It’s the quality in our delivery – that goes to our set pieces and it goes to our balls from out wide. It just wasn’t really good enough tonight. When we have quality delivery, we have guys in the box who can score goals. But we didn’t really give them too much of a chance to get in the box.”
The men’s team record moves to one win, four losses and one tie and they sit in seventh place in the Pacific Division. The club next heads to Alberta with games against the Lethbridge Pronghorns on Saturday and the MacEwan Griffins on Sunday.
The women’s team, who hit the road for the first time this season, had a rough trip to Lethbridge on Saturday.
The Pronghorns exploded for five goals to blank the visiting Cascades and hand the club their most lopsided loss since Oct. 13, 2015.
“We were very flat in the first half,” Cascades head coach Rob Giesbrecht said. “We paid the price for being reactive, and we dug ourselves a hole we couldn’t get out of. Our opponents took their chances well. It’s important we learn that in Canada West women’s soccer, a team must earn the points they accumulate. Today’s flat performance was uncharacteristic of us; however, full credit to our opponent.”
But the Cascades bounced back big on Sunday, with a 1-0 win in Calgary against the Dinos.
Amanda Carruthers scored her third goal this season at the 15-minute mark to give the Cascades a lead they would hold onto for the rest of the game. Goalkeeper Emily Harold held the fort, making 10 saves for the shutout win.
“As a coach, I was looking forward to how our players would respond, because I could see in their eyes that they weren’t satisfied with their performance yesterday,” Giesbrecht said. “We showed great character and determination, and we held a very good opponent at bay.”
The women’s team record is now one win, two losses and one tie in Canada West regular season action. The women continue their schedule on the road, as they take on the MacEwan Griffins on Friday and then travel to Prince George to battle the University of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves on Sunday.
For more on both teams, visit ufvcascades.ca.