The Campbell River Golden Wings welcome the Sooke Celtic this Saturday (Sept. 23) afternoon, after a win and a loss in a pair of Division two games.
The Golden Wings opened the of the Vancouver Island Soccer League (VISL) season up at home versus Lakehill FC of Victoria, by a score of 2-0. Goals came from Daniel Cato in the 18th minute, and from Ty Ludwikowski, a halftime substitution who scored in the 66th minute.
“He’s a young guy with which we saw tremendous potential,” said club manager Graeme McNeill of Ludwikowski, who helped Team B.C. to a gold during this past summer’s North American Indigenous Games. “We were hoping for him to have a breakout season. As soon as he came on the pitch at the half, you could just see our club take the game over. He was like a thorn in Lakehill’s side. He’s had an incredible impact on our team.”
Things didn’t go so well in the Golden Wings first road game, versus the Mid Isle Mariners of Ladysmith. Again scoring first, breakdowns resulted in a pair of second half goals by their opposition, in the 47th and 70th minute.
“We came out a little flat at the start of the second half,” said McNeill. “We didn’t really have that killer instinct to go and take control. They scored the equalizer on a nothing play.”
A 40-yard shot took the wind out of the Golden Wing’s sails, as McNeill described the team going into panic mode. McNeill saw mental lapses which resulted in undisciplined play, specifically a yellow card by Cole Christensen in the 53rd minute.
“We lost track of the plan,” said McNeill. “We started doing things as individuals versus the team. In the first game we controlled the play, and that comes down to some of the composure of the veterans.”
Their attention now shifts to Sooke. Winners of their last game by a score of 1-0 versus SFFC Knappet Prospects of Saanich, Celtic was promoted to Division two after winning the Division three title last season.
“Traditionally, Sooke has had a strong soccer culture,” said McNeill. “They had a top team in Division one. They struggled over the past few years, but put the pieces together in Div three in being promoted. I think they‘ll have a strong team, but there’s an advantage to us, and that’s them coming up north to play us in Campbell River.
Kick off for the game is at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday (Sept.23) at Robron Field.