Vikes soccer teams get back on winning track

The University of Victoria Vikes showed their mettle by overcoming a 1-0 deficit to score three unanswered goals within 15 minutes in the second half to defeat the University of Manitoba Bisons 3-1 in a Canada West women’s soccer game Friday at Centennial Stadium.

The Bisons don’t have to worry about much in Canada West this season, as they are guaranteed a berth into the U Sports national championship tournament in November as host. The Vikes, however, must earn their way in and Friday’s victory moved UVic to 2-1-1.

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Kiara Kilbey got the rally going against the Bisons when she equalized at 63 minutes. Georgia Bignold scored the winner and Rachel Baird added the insurance goal at 77 minutes.

The Vikes, ranked in the U Sports top-10 two weeks ago before dropping out this week, will continue their quest to climb back in when they keep the Keystone province vibe going by hosting the University of Winnipeg Wesmen today at 5 p.m. in another Canada West game at Centennial Stadium.

In Canada West men’s soccer action Friday night at Centennial Stadium, the UVic Vikes (2-4-1) got a goal from Scott Jones off a corner kick at 53 minutes to record a much-needed 1-0 victory over the MacEwan Griffins of Edmonton (1-4).

“I kept my eye on the ball, off the corner kick, and directed it into the bottom corner of the net,” said Jones, a fourth-year student out of Oak Bay.

“It was not the prettiest game, but it was three points, and that’s all that matters.”

It was the second consecutive victory for the slow-starting Vikes, who are trying to remain in contact with the playoff pack in Canada West, after a winless five games to begin the season. A total of 21 players have seen the field this season for the Vikes as head coach Bruce Wilson looks for the right combinations.

“It wasn’t easy tonight, but I am pleased. It was a great result for our team,” said Wilson.

Jasdeep Lally, who recorded the clean sheet, had to be sharp near the end against the pressing Griffins.

The Vikes continue the quest for another three points, again with an Alberta theme, when they host the Mount Royal Cougars of Calgary (1-2-1 heading into Friday night action) in a Canada West matinée Sunday at 2 p.m. at Centennial Stadium.

VIKES NOTES: Former UVic star and Olympian Lynne Beecroft begins her 35th year at the helm of the Vikes women’s field hockey team when UVic hosts the UBC Thunderbirds today and Sunday at 11 a.m. to begin Canada West play. The Vikes are led this season by fourth-year veteran and two-time Canada West all-star Kristina Walters-Shumka and freshman Anna Mollenhauer, a member of the Canadian junior national development team and daughter of former Vikes great and Olympian Nancy Mollenhauer.

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