The Pinnacles FC under-18 girls were 10 minutes away from opening the B.C. Soccer B Cup provincial championship with a win.
Instead, the Pinnacles settled for a 1-1 tie with the Chilliwack Attack at King’s Park Thursday morning.
“A 1-0 win would had been better. 1-1 tie we still control our destiny,” said Pinnacles FC coach Carlos Mendonca.
The Pinnacles broke the scoreless deadlock midway through the second half when Sierra Yamamoto, fending off a defender, chipped a shot over Attack keeper Mackenzie Rae. The Attack managed to get the equalizer as the Pinnacles lost track of the ball.
“My goalie (Natasha Reimer) played fantastic. She stopped a couple of sure goals,” said Mendonca, who is missing three of his regular forwards. “They were playing to the last 90 minutes. We have to make sure to clean and take care of the 18 yard box and nothing gets through.”
“Our goalkeeper was, hands down, player of the game,” said Pinnacle Jordyn Kowalchuk.
Mendonca found his team to be nervous at the start and said when facing an unknown team like the Attack, the players go through a feeling out process for the first 20 minutes. They want to learn how the opposing team plays and what their strengths and weaknesses are. The Pinnacles adjusted once they learned that the Attack liked hitting their central strikers who possessed speed.
“Their game was very direct. We made sure our central defenders were more at home. Worked a little tighter together,” he said.
Kowalchuk said the tying goal was tough for them to give up, especially when they thought victory was within reach.
Now the team will regroup to face the Shuswap Selects Friday at 1 p.m. at King’s Park.
The full tournament schedule and results are available at the BC Soccer at www.girlsandboysbcups.bcsoccer.net/home.