The Carihi senior girls soccer team wrapped up its 2015 season with a victory Tuesday. It just wasn’t quite the season-ending victory the Tyees had been hoping for.
Rallying from an opening-round loss to top-seeded St. Michael’s University School in the Vancouver Island AA Championships Monday in Comox, the Tyees drew 1-1 with Brooks Secondary in the afternoon.
That sent Carihi into Tuesday’s final round of group games needing a victory over Nanaimo District Secondary School and a SMUS win over Brooks to earn a spot in the semifinals.
The Tyees held up their end of the bargain, blanking Nanaimo 1-0 on a goal by Makayla Gray. But Brooks, which had tied both Carihi and Nanaimo, topped SMUS 3-0 to edge the Tyees by a single point in the group standings.
Gray also scored the team’s goal in the draw with Brooks, which went on to earn a provincial tournament berth.
“It was an awesome performance, well beyond expectations,” Carihi coach John Jespsen said.
Carihi snuck into the Island AA playoffs with the final berth after placing fifth in last week’s North Island tourney. The Tyees then played top-seeded SMUS closely before falling 2-0 in the opening round of the Islands at Valley View fields.
“We over-achieved this year,” said Jepsen. “It’s a very, very young team. We thought it would be a challenge just to reach the North Island championships. To be just a smidgin away from reaching the Island finals was amazing.”
The Tyees finished the season with an overall mark of 16-10-2, outscoring their opponents 43-28.
SMUS regained its equilibrium Tuesday to top host Mark Isfeld in the semifinals and down North Island champion Ballenas in the Island final. Brooks, which fell to Ballenas in the other semifinal, then defeated Mark Isfeld to claim the third and final Island berth to the Provincial AA championships in Penticton May 28-30.