(Metro Vancouver) – The race for the final Provincial Championship spot for both Men’s and Women’s Eagles would prove to be an up and down exchange throughout the weekend against the Langara Falcons. With one of the last league games being a contest between the two teams, at least the Eagles would have a hand in the fate of the outcome.
The home stretch began on Saturday when the Falcons played host to the Eagles. With both teams needing points to maintain playoff positioning, the Women’s Eagles came out with force and determination and held the majority of the pressure in the first half. Constant pressing in the Langara half resulted in many scoring chances for the Eagles and, in the 25th minute, it paid off as an extra effort when third-year Kathleen Gratz (Surrey) challenged the Falcons’ goalie resulting in a turnover that Gratz was able to tap home and open the game. Langara responded with increased pressure on the Eagles back line in the second half but the Eagles stayed strong and held the line to only allow a few scoring chances for the Falcons. When the Eagles’ defense did bend slightly, second-year keeper Chelsea Jewell (Delta) supported the team with the big saves that were needed. In the final 25 minutes, the Eagles exerted more pressure up the field but it was not until the final 5 minutes of the game that first-year forward, Harveer Rai (Surrey) secured the win with a rocket shot giving Jewell the shut-out and the Eagles three-points for the win in a 2-0 result.
On Sunday, the Women’s Eagles knew that they needed a victory to secure a playoff spot against third-place Quest in Squamish. A Quest goal off a corner kick in the first 15 minutes of play made the Eagles’ task even harder. Not giving up, the Eagles continued to challenge from the front line with tenacity from the forwards and composure and solid movement in the centre midfield led by performances like first-year Jessica Anderegg (Surrey). In the end, Quest played stronger racking up another two goals in the game to end the match with a 3-0 loss for the Eagles. With the Langara win over Douglas in other league play, the Eagles fate was determined, finishing just shy of a playoff spot in fifth place for the season.
As the Women’s Eagles’ season ends, the Men’s continues on to Provincial Championships at Quest University this weekend. The Men play their first game of playoff action on Saturday, October 27th at 1:30pm against top-ranked Douglas College Royals.