It’s been 27 years since an Island team won the Province Cup A women’s soccer championship. Head coach Dave Dew was on the Gorge FC bench for the last one in 1995 and he was also on the bench for the latest on Sunday at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby as Gorge FC Team Sales defeated Coastal FC of Delta 5-3 in the second highest-scoring final in the 40 years of the tournament for the top amateur teams in the province.
It’s not that Dew has been slouching off during the intervening years. Dew and assistant coach Steve Simonson, also of Victoria, brought along the likes of Olympic Games multi-medallists Christine Sinclair, Sophie Schmidt, Erin McLeod and Desiree Scott as 16-and-17-year-olds with the Whitecaps W League team and the Canadian U-17 program of the 2000s.
Dew was looking for a project again at the club level, and did he ever find it, this season.
“We put this [Gorge FC] team together this season, with so much of it made up of former University of Victoria Vikes players, either current, alumni or redshirts,” said the veteran mentor Dew.
Former UVic Vikes striker Kiera Kilbey scored twice for Gorge FC in the final to be named MVP. Former Vikes star Liz Gregg (nee Hansen) and UVic redshirt Maddie Yakamovich also scored. The other goal came from Lambrick Park Secondary grad and former Canada U-20 player Katie Kraeutner, who played NCAA Div. 1 for the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers.
“Swangard Stadium was fantastic and its big, wide field really suited how we play, which is with lots of pace,” said Dew.
Gorge FC Team Sales went undefeated in league play with one draw and went 6-0 through the Lower Island Terry Price Cup competition and then edged Coquitlam Metro Ford 1-0 in the Province Cup semifinals en route to the Island’s third B.C. title following the 1995 Gorge FC squad and Red Lion Inn in 1986.
“The amazing thing is we made our run without [former UVic standout and Canada U-20 player] Jaclyn Sawicki, who was away helping lead the Philippines to the 2023 World Cup in Asian qualifying,” noted Dew, assistant coach for Canada in the 1995 World Cup and national youth team coach in the early 2000s.
“There is a window where she will be available to us for the [2022 Toyota national championship tournament Oct. 5-10 in Vaughan, Ont.].”
That appearance at nationals has been nearly three decades in the making.
CORNER KICKS: All three Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association teams swept to victories in their finals over the weekend. Joining Gorge FC Team Sales was Gorge FC Division 1 beating Coquitlam Metro Ford Galaxy on penalties in the provincial B Cup final and the Cowichan Cougars winning the Province Cup Over-30 Masters final with a 2-1 victory against Meralomas United of Vancouver, with both the latter finals at Burnaby Lake West Sports Complex … The Province Cup men’s A final Sunday at Swangard was won 3-1 by BB5 United Central City Breakers of Surrey over FC Tigers of Vancouver.