Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency teams completed an unbeaten day at the Whitecaps FC College Showcase at Surrey's Newton Athletic Park on Saturday. The U-14 and U-18 teams both won, while the U-16 squad ended the triple header with a draw.
After an impressive victory against Calgary South West United on Friday, the U-14 Residency team got the day off to a winning start with a 2-1 win against Surrey United U-15 of the EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League. Thomas Gardner opened the scoring before the 10-minute mark, finding the back of the net after a corner kick. The ‘Caps doubled their advantage just before halftime when Brian Im centered the ball to Francesco Saporito for an easy tap in and 2-0 lead. Surrey got back into the match with a goal ten minutes into the second half, but they would get no closer as the ‘Caps took the 2-1 win.
“We generated quite a few chances in the second half – hitting the crossbar and the post – so we probably should have scored a few more,” said Bart Choufour, Whitecaps FC U-14 Residency head coach. “But overall I was pleased with the effort from the boys today.”
The U1-8 Residency squad continued their momentum by coming out on the winning end of a wild 3-2 match with De Anza Force U-17/18.
The ‘Caps got on the board first on 24 minutes as Yassin Essa centred to Spencer DeBoice for a close-range finish and 1-0 lead, which they would take into the break. The match turned on 57 minutes, as De Anza got on the end of a loose ball in the box to poke in the tying goal before coming back with a quick counter to take a 2-1 lead two minutes later. That would not be the end of the scoring though. With a little less than 20 minutes remaining, Ben Fisk beat his defender down the left flank before sending in a cross that deflected off a defender and into the net to level the match 2-2. Then, on 82 minutes, Wesley Cain made a great run down the right touchline before finding Fisk coming in late at the back post. Fisk then beat the goalkeeper with a low strike to the near post for the decisive goal in a 3-2 victory.
“We started off playing well but we began to fade a bit at the end of the first half,” said Richard Grootscholten, Whitecaps FC Residency technical director and head coach. “To go down a goal and then come back and still get a win, that’s not an easy thing to do, so that was good to see.”
Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-18
Callum Irving; Jason van Blerk, Tim Hickson, Daniel Stanese, Adam Ploakiewicz; Wesley Cain (Sebastien Cabrera ’82), Ben McKendry (Declan Rodriguez ’80), Ben Fisk, Spencer DeBoice (Titouan Chopin ’75), Yassin Essa (Alex Rowley ’60); Carlos Marquez
The U-16 Residency squad came close to making it three wins on the day, but settled for a 2-2 draw against De Anza Force U-15/16.
The 'Caps scored first on 30 minutes as Matthew Chow was brought down in the box. Brody Huitema then slotted home the ensuing spot kick to give the home team a 1-0 lead. The second half saw that advantage double. Residency goalkeeper Nolan Wirth made an incredible one-handed save on a shot from no more than five yards out, allowing the 'Caps to come back down the field and get a goal off the foot of Chow for a 2-0 lead. However, the match was far from over. De Anza got back into the mix with a wicked strike on 67 minutes, and then tied things up after a controversial penalty kick with four minutes remaining to see the match finish 2-2.
“After a couple weeks off we didn’t have our best match, but we played well at times," said Grootscholten. "Nolan made a fantastic save to allow us to score the second goal, but in the end to have a penalty called against you, that’s a tough way to finish a match. We’ll continue to work with the players on the mental side of the game."
Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-16
Nolan Wirth; Quinton Duncan (Matthew van der Eyden '62), Alex Comsia, Jackson Farmer, Sam Adebuke; Matthew Chow, Mitch Piraux, Liam Elbourne, Carlos Patino (Marco Bustos '45), Jordan Haynes; Brody Huitema (Parker Ellis '67)