Whitecaps FC U-23 wrap up season on Wednesday
The playoffs may be out of reach, but Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-23 (6W-6L-3D) still have a lot to play for Wednesday night when they host Fraser Valley Mariners FC (0W-14L-1D) in their regular season finale.
Although their 2-1 loss to Victoria Highlanders FC over the weekend officially eliminated the ‘Caps from playoff contention, the inaugural Juan De Fuca Plate could be a fine consolation prize.
With a win against Mariners FC on Wednesday, the ‘Caps will be crowned champions of the Juan De Fuca Plate — a supporters-driven competition between the three British Columbia clubs in the United Soccer Leagues (USL) Premier Development League (PDL).
Any other result would put Victoria atop the standings and see Highlanders FC lift the trophy.
The young ‘Caps are 2W-0L-0D against Fraser Valley this season, with both results ending in convincing 4-0 victories.
Since the midway point of the season, the sixth-place ‘Caps have really kicked into high gear, posting a 4W-2L-1D record in their previous seven matches.
With 33 goals in 15 matches, the Blue and White have scored more than any other Western Conference, Northwest Division side this season.
Meanwhile, five of their six losses were decided by just one goal.
“It’s always important to end the season on a high and on a positive,” Whitecaps FC U-23 head coach Craig Dalrymple told whitecapsfc.com. “The players have done a lot of good things and have had a lot of good performances this season. I think they just need to focus on finishing out the season as strong as they can.”
Results wise, it has not been the prettiest of seasons for the Abbotsford, B.C. outfit, who remain the lone PDL side not to have claimed a victory in their 2012 campaign.
In 15 matches, Fraser Valley have been outscored by a 38-3 margin, though their last two fixtures ended in highly contested 1-0 defeats against Seattle Sounders FC U-23 and Victoria Highlanders FC respectively.
Mariners FC earned their lone point of the season May 19 in a 1-1 draw with Washington Crossfire.
“Any team that plays against Whitecaps FC will be motivated, especially local clubs,” Dalrymple said. “We’re the professional club in Western Canada and any team that suits up against us is always motivated.”
Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. PT at Swangard Stadium. Admission to Wednesday’s final PDL home match is free of charge.