The Cowichan Crushers U14 girls Gold soccer team clinched first place in the combined U13/U14 with a win over Juan de Fuca’s U13 team on Saturday afternoon.
It came down to the final game as Cowichan took a record of 13 wins, one draw and one loss up against JDF’s 13-0-2 mark. Cowichan’s only loss of the season had come at the hands of JDF in November.
Thanks to goals by leading scorer Taya Brubacher, Jarrett Elliott and Georgia McLean, Cowichan prevailed 3-1 in the teams’ second meeting of the campaign, improving to 43 points on the season, while JDF remained at 39.
Cowichan will head to the Lower Island U14 finals on Feb. 17 against a Bays United team that they have already defeated twice in league play, and head coach Neall Rowlings believes his team could make a run.
“We definitely have a team that could win provincials,” he said. “It will be a lot of work and a positive mindset to achieve as we are quite used to being the older, stronger team in the current division. The girls have set a goal to win provincials and they are training hard and pushing themselves. The parents have been very supportive and the average attendance is 92 per cent, which is unheard-of.
“Last year, we gauged ourselves against Gorge U13, who were the champs. This year, other teams have used us as their benchmark.”
If Cowichan wins the Lower Island final, they will face Powell River in the Island final, which could lead to Coastal Cup and provincial berths.
“I’m a little superstitious and I don’t like to look too far ahead,” Rowlings cautioned.