Fraser’s penalty kick earns TRU WolfPack bronze

Penticton soccer player helps lift the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack to a bronze medal

Penticton’s James Fraser scored one of Thompson Rivers University WolfPack’s three penalty kicks to help earn the bronze medal at the USPORTS men’s soccer championship.

The WolfPack, hosts of the championship tournament, defeated league champion University of British Columbia Thunderbirds 3-2. It is the WolfPack’s second ever CIS/USPORTS bronze medal, the volleyball team captured bronze in 2008.

With a conservative start of the match, the WolfPack opened scoring in the 23rd minute and carried that lead into the half.

The Thunderbirds infused some new faces in the second half which gave them some life to pressure the WolfPack back end. However, in the 63rd minute the Thunderbirds turned the ball over and the Canada West player of the year Mitchell Popadynetz (Maple Ridge) got a piece of the bouncing ball past the Thunderbirds keeper to give the WolfPack a 2-0 lead.

Just five minutes later, a Thunderbirds player was hauled down in the box. A penalty kick goal cut the WolfPack’s lead to 2-1. A corner kick was then converted to knot the game 2-2 in the 86th minute setting the stage for a dramatic penalty kick contest to decide the medal.

TRU’s Popadynetz, Thomas Lantmeeters (Belgium) and Fraser scored while keeper Connors stopped two UBC shooters and had the other one fire wide.

Other Penticton players on the WolfPack roster are Jordell Afonso and Brady Van Ryswyk.

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