Carihi junior boys take North Island title, place second in Island title

Fergus Bagley

Special to the Mirror

Only two teams qualified for the Junior edition of Island Championship from the North Island in 2018.

The No. 1 ranked Carihi Tyees’ squad was strong on paper and results that season had indicated that the team would stroll into the next round. A No. 3 North-North ranked Isfeld team that had barely competed during regular season play rose to the occasion. The Tyees were left eating humble pie while Courtenay moved on.

Fast forward a year and Carihi were again facing Isfeld in the first game of North Islands.

The head-to-head record was 1-1-0.

According to the zone allocations, whoever lost that match would likely be eliminated. With the Tyees’ squad full in numbers and energy, they took an early lead. The match ebbed and flowed, but Carihi emerged victorious. That game was the most challenging of the tournament as Carihi beat Nanaimo’s Aspengrove and then Powell River’s Brooks in the final to finish first in the North.

Despite their ranking in the North, expectations were low for the AA team at Islands where teams of all sizes compete.

AAA teams with academies from the South Island such as Reynolds, Oak Bay and Claremont have dominated this tournament in the past and they were again all present this year.

Having missed out on the Champions League of BC junior soccer last year, the Tyees were just happy to make it. Further dampening the team’s prospects was the call-up of free scoring midfielders Sam Borrie and Tsubasa Mukainakano to the senior squad for their must-win games.

The round robin consisted of hosts Brentwood, No. 1 Central, powerhouse Reynolds, No. 2 South, and wildcard nemesis Isfeld, who made the tournament through a backdoor loss of a central team.

First up was Brentwood. Aided by early goals, the Tyees played with confidence and emerged 4-2 victors.

Next up, Carihi met Isfeld for the fifth time this season. The Courtenay team were buoyed by the Tyees’ weakened midfield.

They scored one which was followed by fine saves by goalie Logan Pierce and last-ditch clearances by defenders such as Kazu Iwamoto and Markus Johnson.

Changes were made, including moving the hardworking Sasch Deschenes back into midfield and the team started creating chances.

With three minutes remaining, Isfeld took the ball to the corner flag in an effort to kill time, but in a last-minute moment of grit and determination, Carihi won the ball back.

Isfeld had made the mistake of pushing their defenders forward.

Hail Mary, the ball was sent long to Nacho De Vega who flicked the ball to fellow Spaniard Ignacio Caro Alvarez. Caro remained calm and the deftest of chips beat the onrushing keeper and the final whistle, sent the Tyee bench into rapturous cheering, and earned the team a hard-fought tie.

Our third group game was against Reynolds who typically alternate between finishing first and second at this tournament.

Midway through the game, Ty Ludwikowski stepped up to take a freekick 30+ yards from goal. His kick had so much dip that their goalie remained rooted to the ground as the ball hit the top left corner. This was the difference as the final score was 2-1.

The team that could from Campbell River had made the final ranked first in their group with +3 goal difference and Isfeld second with +2 goal difference.

With energy spent in close group games, the Tyees faced the AAA powerhouse Claremont from Cordova in the final.

The entire Tyee team, including many not mentioned here, played their socks off but came up short of being champions.

Their season finished with a first place trophy from North Islands and a second place plaque from Islands.

Many of the players showed such outstanding qualities that they will be joining the senior squad at provincials later this month.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Shawn Decaire does a blessing ceremony for the Hama?Elas Community Kitchen in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Hama?Elas Community Kitchen progress shared

Strategic planning, progress made on various projects also discussed at CRDCEH meeting

Forestry companies in B.C. agree to abide by the cedar protocols based on traditional laws of the First Nation members of the Nanwakolas Council. (Photo courtesy, Nanwakolas Council)
B.C. forestry companies agree to abide by cedar protocols drafted by Indigenous council

Western Forest Products and Interfor Corporation among companies to adapt declaration drafted by Nanwakolas Council

Campbell River city council has given unanimous support to its mayor to continue the fight for the aquaculture industry on our coast. Black Press file photo
Campbell River city council unanimous in support of fish farms

‘I’m certainly not willing to roll over and accept a bad decision,’ says one councilor

(Black Press file photo)
One dead after single-vehicle accident in Campbell River yesterday

‘…we are hoping for a full recovery for both passengers,’ says RCMP

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the press theatre at the B.C. legislature for an update on COVID-19, Jan. 7, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 spread steady with 509 new cases Friday

Hospitalized and critical care cases decline, nine deaths

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Dr. Shannon Waters, the medical health officer for the Cowichan Valley Region, is reminding people to stay the course with COVID-19 measures. (File photo)
‘Stay the course’ with COVID measures, Island Health reminds

Limit social activity, wash hands, wear a mask, and isolate if you feel sick

Cowichan Tribes members line up at a drive-up clinic on Wednesday, Jan. 13 to receive the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the region. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
BCAFN condems racism against Cowichan Tribes after COVID-19 outbreak

“Any one of us could do everything right and still catch the virus”: Regional Chief Terry Teegee.

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

Nursing staff at West Coast General Hospital celebrate the announcement of a $6.25-million expansion of the emergency department that will start in March 2021. (File photo)
B.C. health ministry commits $6.25M to hospital expansion in Port Alberni

Plans for larger emergency department have been on hold since 2015

Most Read