The University of the Fraser Valley Cascades men’s soccer team pushed the top-ranked Mount Royal University Cougars to the limit in Saturday’s Canada West quarterfinal, but ultimately fell 2-1 in extra time.
Taylor Richardson drilled home the equalizer for the Cascades in the dying moments of regulation to force extra time in Calgary, but MRU’s Josh Flaksman scored in the 112th minute to give the Cougars the win.
MRU struck first in the 34th minute, as Jonathan Walter found the back of the net. His in-swinging corner kick struck the post and went directly in to give his team the lead.
UFV worked themselves back into the game, and they would get a break in the second half. MRU’s Caden Rogozinski took down Cascades attacker Taylor Richardson on the left wing and picked up his second yellow card in just four minutes.
It took until stoppage time for the Cascades to finally breakthrough for the goal. Richardson received a ball at the top of the box and smashed a volley into the right side of the net and past a diving keeper for the equalizer.
The two teams battled back and forth in extra time, but it was Mount Royal that eventually found the winner with eight minutes remaining in the second bonus frame. Miguel Da Rocha drove into the box and picked out a pass to Josh Flaksman who took a touch and slid it into the bottom right corner of the goal.
So proud of this team - took the #9 team in Canada to double OT and just fell short. The Boys fought until the end and never gave up - that’s what UFV Soccer is about. https://t.co/715e4LWZNk— Tom Lowndes (@T_Lowndes7) October 30, 2022
“We talked about what we wanted to be as a team in July, and we wanted to be a team that never gives up,” stated UFV head coach Tom Lowndes. “We fight to the very last second that we’re on the field, and to see them do that today and battle right to that last second for each other — it made me immensely proud to be their coach.”
“That’s what we want UFV soccer to be about, and we’ve gone out and shown it.”
The defeat sees the team’s CW season come to an end, while the Cougars will move on to play in the CW Final Four.
Lowndes applauded his team’s mentality after the game.
“I think we showed really good signs of maturity, and obviously the older players helped lead that, but we also forget that we had multiple players in their first-year of Canada West play, Nicolas Burret, Dulain Panditha, Carson Muter, and Ivan Mejia all in their first year playing big, big minutes.”
“We fell a little bit short, but we took the number nine team in the country to double overtime. They are a very good team, and there is no shame in losing to a very good team.”