Prince George, B.C. - The UNBC Timberwolves and Trinity Western Spartans came into Friday night with matching 2-2-0 records, but it was the visitors from Langley, B.C. who came away with a 3-0 victory.
Both teams traded chances, but it was the Spartans who opened the scoring in the 22nd minute. A scramble inside the six-yard box found Jenaya Robertson (Delta, B.C.) on the goal line, and she made no mistake depositing her third of the campaign to make it 1-0.
The Timberwolves had a glorious chance to knot the score in the 35th minute. Sidney Roy's hustle caused a breakdown in the Spartans end, and Paige Payne found herself with a gaping cage. Her shot was inches too high, as she hit the crossbar from 15 yards out.
UNBC had another great opportunity to get on the board, as Sasha Eidsvik found herself behind the defense, but TWU keeper Christina Oliverio (Calgary) made a great challenge and deflected it out of play.
Trinity Western picked up the pace in the second half, and earned themselves a number of quality chances that were thwarted by freshman Timberwolves keeper Brooke Molby.
They eventually solved the Squamish native in the 69th minute, on a brilliant run from Rachel Hutchinson (Cloverdale, B.C.). She weaved her way through the Timberwolves defensive third before beating Molby with a blast inside the right post to make it 2-0.
The air seemed to evacuate the Timberwolves side, though their efforts did not cease. Pressing upfield with more determination, however, allowed TWU to add another goal in the 88th minute. Seina Kashima (Burnaby, B.C.), who used her significant speed to her advantage all match, cut to the middle of the pitch and beat a fully-extended Molby with a tremendous shot that found the top-right corner.
When the referee blew the final whistle, the Spartans earned a 3-0 victory on am 8-3 advantage in the shots-on-goal category.
With the win, Trinity Western improves to 3-2-0, while the Timberwolves drop to 2-3-0. UNBC will wrap up their home schedule on Sunday, September 24th, when they play host to the UFV Cascades.
Comments from TWU head coach Graham Roxburgh:
"We played well. It was a good road effort. Any time you go on the road in Canada West it can be a tricky game. UNBC played quite well, but we were able to generate some chances."
"I was a little disappointed that we did not go into half time with more than a one goal lead. Because we had three or four clear cut chances that we did not bury. Overall it was a good effort. We did not play to our strengths early on, but as the game went on we managed the game and had possession and started finding each other's feet. The second goal settled us down and then we got quite comfortable. Good game and we will move on to Edmonton and prepare for Sunday."
Roxburgh on the play of individual players:
"The second goal from Rachel Hutchinson was superb. And Siena Kashima was very smart in how she finished off our third goal. Amy Gartke (Edmonton) and Kathleen Chin (Calgary) in the second half really controlled the game. and our back four seemed to be quite comfortable. Brooklyn Tidder (White Rock, B.C.) and Liz Hicks (Surrey, B.C.) were very solid and dealt with any half threats that they had."
Comments from TWU forward Rachel Hutchinson:
"I was really impressed with how UNBC moved the ball, and were able to play out of the back," said Rachel Hutchinson in a postgame interview. "A lot of teams play really directly and aren't super possession-orientated, but UNBC really moved the ball."
On the teams second goal: "We do work on those in practice, so it was good to finish one," said Hutchinson after the game. "I have had some inconsistency over the last couple games, so it was nice."
"We are really working well as a team," said Hutchinson. "None of these goals happen if we aren't working as a team. At the end of the day, we should be happy with the result tonight, but we shouldn't be satisfied. We have a lot of tough games coming up."
Comments from UNBC defender Ashley Volk:
"We knew they had some select individuals who were skilled and crafty," said UNBC defender Ashley Volk. "I think we dealt with it well, but they're an athletic team."
"Coming into the game we wanted to maintain control, and I think we did in the first half," said Volk. "I think we were successful in some of our goals, but we definitely have some more learning to do."
On their home finale:
"I think we have a good mentality and positive attitude. It is the last game at home for our seniors, so we really want to pull out a win for them."
Up Next: TWU will have a day off as they travel to Edmonton to take on the MacEwan Griffins on Sunday.
23' TWU Jenaya Robertson (3) – unassisted.
89' TWU Seina Kashima (1) – unassisted
TWU Christina Oliverio (W, 3-1-0) three saves, 90 minutes
UNBC Brooke Molby (L1-4-0) five saves, three goals against, 90 minutes.