VANCOUVER, BC - Whitecaps FC U-23 (2W-2L-0D) won convincingly on Sunday as they beat North Sound SeaWolves (0W-2L-0D) 5-1 at UBC Thunderbird Stadium.
Whitecaps FC took no time at all to get off the mark as a Spencer DeBoice shot was deflected by North Sound 'keeper Ryan Herman straight into the path of Harry Lakhan who was left with an easy finish to open the scoring in the second minute.
Some neat play in the 24th minute saw Vancouver nearly double their lead. Aminu Abdallah played the ball into the box to Carlos Marquez who produced a clever backheel flick to DeBoice, who then collected the ball but directed his shot straight at Herman.
As North Sound played the ball out from defence, Lakhan stole the ball just outside the area and steamed in on goal. The midfielder kept his composure to finish into the far corner for his and Vancouver's second goal.
Whitecaps FC made it three with another combination play when Marquez received the ball in midfield and turned to pass it between two SeaWolves defenders for the onrushing DeBoice who cooly finished past the keeper on 37 minutes.
North Sound managed to pull a goal back on 39 minutes as Brad Jacobson raced towards goal. The midfielder composed himself and produced a clinical finish into the far corner out of Sean Melvin's reach.
After a quiet opening to the second half North Sound were reduced to ten men on 61 minutes when Victor Vasquez was given his marching orders after collecting a second yellow card for a wild challenge on Lakhan.
Substitute Gagandeep Dosanjh almost made an instant impact on 67 minutes as he raced onto a clever chip from DeBoice. Despite the attentions of a North Sound defender Dosanjh lobbed the 'keeper but his shot hit the crossbar.
Vancouver added a fourth goal with six minutes remaining when a strong shot from DeBoice from well outside the area was fumbled over the line by the North Sound goalkeeper.
In the final minute Whitecaps FC grabbed a fifth with Sam Adekugbe playing the ball through to substitute Niall Cousens who held off a challenge before finishing with a rifle into the far corner and shortly after the referee blew the final whistle with the score at 5-1.
Head of high performance Stuart Neely was please with the result but felt there were improvements that could have been made.
"It was a hard fought performance for us, but in the end a deserved win," said Neely. "We'll have to prepare ourselves better for opposition and for being able to finish the game off earlier than what we did but in the end a good result, a needed result and it gets us back on track."
Whitecaps FC U-23 next travel to Victoria on Friday for their second tussle this season with Highlanders FC as they seek revenge for a 3-2 loss earlier in May. Kickoff on Friday is at 7p.m. PT at Royal Athletic Park in Victoria.
2' - VAN - Harry Lakhan
24' - VAN - Harry Lakhan
37' - VAN - Spencer DeBoice (Carlos Marquez)
39' - NS - Brad Jacobson (Nicholas Hamer)
84' - VAN - Spencer DeBoice
90' - VAN - Niall Cousens (Sam Adekugbe)
Shots: Vancouver 19 - North Sound 5
Saves: Vancouver 0 - North Sound 6
Fouls: Vancouver 17 - North Sound 11
Offsides: Vancouver 5 - North Sound 5
Corners: Vancouver 5 - North Sound 2
29 - NS - Victor Vasquez
57 - VAN Harry Lakhan
61' - NS - Victor Vasquez
64' - NS - Braxton Griffin
69 - VAN - Aminu Abdallah
70' - NS - Graham Reid
61' - NS - Victor Vasquez
Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-23:
13.Sean Melvin; 2.Colton O'Neill, 5.Derrick Bassi, 6.Adam Clement, 25.Sam Adekugbe; 3.Ethen Sampson (10.Bobby Jhutty 82'), 7.Harry Lakhan (9.Gagandeep Dosanjh 64'), 20.Aminu Abdallah (21.Marco Visintin 73'); 14.Spencer DeBoice, 15.Carlos Marquez (17.Niall Cousens 70'), 23.Cam Hundal (24.Peter Bow 79')
Subs not used:
22.Marco Carducci, 4.James Farenhorst
North Sound SeaWolves:
1.Ryan Herman; 2.Pavel Bryson, 4.Taylor Peay (19.David Durrant 54'), 6.Graham Reid, 15.Andres Suazo (20.Jordan Aidoud 17'); 5.Nicholas Hamer, 7.Brad Jacobson, 8.Zachary Hamer, 11.Victor Vasquez; 9.Dom Dismuke (21.Elliott Richards 29'), 34.Braxton Griffin
Subs not used: