'Caps at College - Week 2
VANCOUVER, BC – Products of the Vancouver Whitecaps FC youth system continue to strut their stuff in the second week of collegiate play, both domestically and south of the border.
Reynold Stewart and Cam Hundal, who have both played for Whitecaps FC’s Premier Development League (PDL) team, were named Canada West stars of the week for their starring roles in their school’s success early on in the season. It was the second straight week Hundal has received the award.
Heading into this weekend’s action, three of the top scorers in the Canada West have all been involved with Whitecaps FC. Hundal leads the conference with four goals, while recent trialist Brett Levis and Stewart are tied for second with three goals apiece.
In terms of team success, the Blue and White are well represented on teams that are nationally ranked. The Simon Fraser University men’s team (head coach Alan Koch, Spencer DeBoice, Jason van Blerk, Alex Rowley) are currently ranked first in the NCSCAA/Continental Tire rankings. In Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS), the University of British Columbia men’s team (Niall Cousens, Harry Lakhan, Navid Mashinchi, Greg Smith, Reynold Stewart, William Hyde) come in at number three and right on their heels is the University of Alberta (Niko Saler, Matthew va der Eyden), coming in at number five.
Meanwhile in CIS women’s soccer, the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees (Julia McDonald) are ranked first in the nation, closely followed by the third-ranked Trinity Western Spartans (Natalie Boyd, Jennifer Castillo, Jenna Di Nunzio, Vanessa Kovacs, Tessa Meyer, Lindsey Pulice, Alicia Tesan and Nikki Wright), rounded out with UBC (Janine Frazao, Shayla Chorney, Tamara Roughead, Madison Guy, Meghan Pasternak, Navneet Samra, Aman Shergill, Jasmine Mander, Jasmin Dhanda, Alyssa Williamson, Taylor Shannik and Sydney Morrison) in sixth place.
In the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) national rankings, the New Mexico Lobos men’s team (Ben McKendry) are currently ranked 14th.
A myriad of Whitecaps FC graduates met in the home and home series between UBC and Trinity Western University over the weekend, both UBC victories (5-1, 6-1). Stewart had a weekend to remember for the Thunderbirds, finding the back of the net three times in two matches versus the Spartans. Cousens also had a goal and an assist in the two outings.
In Simon Fraser University’s 9-0 win over Trinity Lutheran College, two ‘Caps connected on the Clan’s fourth goal of the match when U-18 Residency product Jason van Blerk finished off a well-placed corner from Alex Rowley.
South of the border, Brody Huitema scored the first two official goals of his collegiate career in dramatic fashion. In a 3-2 win for Duke University over Davidson, the freshman striker scored goal with 50 seconds remaining in the first overtime to win the match for the Blue Devils.
The New Mexico Lobos reached the finals of the TLC Plumbing & Utility invitational, before getting edged by Cal State Northridge 3-2 in the final. McKendry played all 90 minutes in the thrilling final.
Recent Girls Elite graduate Julia McDonald was solid in her second-half cameo in net for the University of Ottawa, keeping a clean sheet for 45 minutes in her team’s 11-0 triumph over Trent University.
The University of Victoria’s 2-1 win over Trinity Western University saw many ‘Caps’ alumni all compete on the same pitch again. Nikki Wright scored a sublime goal on 85 minutes to tie the game at one before Victoria’s Carly Branion-Calles scored in the dying moments of the game to secure the upset over the third-ranked team in Canada.
In the NCAA, three ‘Caps’ alumni contributed to Washington State University’s 2-0 win over UNLV last week – extending their unbeaten start to the season to seven games and counting. Katie Turney and Nicole Setterlund both started the match for the Cougars and Gurveen Clair kept a clean sheet for her side, recording two saves en route to the three points.
Over in California, the Saint Mary’s Gaels downed New Mexico 1-0 last Friday; 2013 Girls Elite graduate Samantha Dion assisted on the lone goal of the match after coming on as a substitute.