Carihi Junior Boys Soccer team successfully defended their North Island Championship this past week.
League play had seen Carihi finish as the top seed winning all six of their games. The championship saw the Carihi squad “beefed up” to a healthy 17 with four additions from the developing “B” team.
The first game was against GP Vanier. The first half saw an under par performance from the Tyees. However, despite not being on their best game, the Carihi Tyees still held their own.
After a misplayed pass by a Vanier defender, Alec Weinstein, the left defender for Carihi, intercepted the pass and quickly gave it to Josh Rolland. Rolland smashed a shot first time into the top right corner for the first goal.
Half time arrived with the Tyees holding a two goal lead. Discussion centred upon the need for a quicker pace and more intelligent use of the ball. The team clearly listened well and put in a much better second half performance.
This improvement was led by Jeffrey Lindenbach, a player that had not originally been on the “A” team. His 20 minute performance was outstanding and really helped the Tyees push on. Carihi finished the game off in strong fashion earning a 5-0 win.
The second day of the Championship saw Carihi start bright and early for their game against Ladysmith.
After two fine strikes by Eugene Park, coach John Jepson pulled off the back line of Shohei Iwamoto, Jack Crosby, John Samuels and Weinstein so they could rest before the next game. Although all the starting back line was not playing, Ladysmith could not get past the formidable Carihi’s second line of defence Jonah Shankar, Joseph Dirom, Andrew Daniels and Brady Assu.
Half time saw Carihi with a four goal lead and the focus for the second half was to be possession and movement off the ball. The final score was 5-0 Carihi.
In the other group, Dover Bay powered past Highland and Brooks before the more difficulty game against the talented Mark Isfeld team. Dover did however prevail with a 1-0 .
The North Island Final was set and not for the first time a Carihi team would take on the might of Dover Bay in a Championship Final.
Carihi dominated the possession of the ball from the onse.
Despite enjoying the possession they were struggling to get the breakthrough. A few changes were made with Park dropping into midfield and Hall playing a more forward role. Perhaps the most significant was the decision to move central defender Samuels upfront to change the dynamic. It wasn’t long before Samuels was provided with a great through ball to run onto.Using all his speed he ran on to the pass and slid into the ball to tap it into the goal.
With the score 1-0, the second half commenced and Carihi knew they would have to keep up the good work. Carihi went in search of the second goal. It was to come in the shape of a Penalty after Chow was fouled in the 18 yard area. Dover never gave up and should be commended for their endeavour.
Indeed, if it wasn’t for a superb save from Tyee keeper Jared Perras they would have scored in the dying minutes of the game.
Perras was having none of it and ensured he did not give up a goal throughout the whole tournament when he came out and narrowed the angle before bravely sprawling his body to close down the shot.
The victory provided the Tyees with back to back North Islands Championship wins. They now move onto their last tournament of the year with the Island Championship hosted in Victoria next week.