SOCCER: Surrey Pegasus FC lands in Newfoundland for another run at national title

Team plays first game of Sport Chek National Club Championships on Wednesday

Players and team officials with Surrey Pegasus FC celebrate their provincial championship win last May in Langford

SURREY — Finally, five months after winning the provincial title, Surrey Pegasus FC has flown clear across the country for a run at a national soccer title.

The Newton-based Premier division team is in St. John’s, Nfld., this week to play for the Sport Chek National Club Championships.

The squad won the B.C. Soccer trophy in Langford last May with a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Coquitlam Metro Ford Wolves.

Now the focus is on the Challenge Trophy, with 12 teams in the hunt.

Pegasus plays its first game of the tournament on Wednesday afternoon (Oct. 5) against a team from Edmonton, as part of Group C action.

CLICK HERE for schedule and results.

Coach Paul Bahia said his players are still trying to find their groove after winning the B.C. title last spring.

“It’s an awkward stage for us because all of the other provincial teams (at nationals) are fresh from their wins, and we won back in May,” Bahia told the Now. “We probably don’t have the same level of confidence we had back then, but I think it’ll come back. Getting that first win would be huge for us.”

The Surrey team’s journey to St. John’s marks its third trip to nationals. They won it all in 2004 in Charlottetown and finished second in 2011 in Brossard.

Many of the players from the 2011 squad are still with the team, including player-coach Bahia, currently sidelined with a calf injury.

“We’re healthy, other than me,” Bahia noted. “I broke my leg last year, and I was playing again just a few weeks ago, but I did my calf  in the first game of this season. I’m day-to-day, but my first priority is as coach, to get them ready for the tournament.”

(Story continues below photo)

(PICTURED: Pegasus midfielder Chetan “C.J.” Jhooty in action in 2015. File photo: GORD GOBLE/SURREY NOW)

The team, which practices and plays at Newton Athletic Park, flew to Newfoundland on Sunday thanks to the support of sponsors and some fundraising events held over the summer.

“It’s a big bill to get there, with 20 guys on our roster plus another five or six players going as support,” Bahia said. “We were able to raise $25,000 from our sponsors and another $20,000 just at our fundraisers, including a big one we had at Mirage (banquet hall) in August. Each player was expected to sell 10 tickets to that, for a total of $500 per player. We brought in some good money there.”

Following a summer break, Pegasus players were back training in August, with an eye clearly on nationals.

“The start to our (Vancouver Metro Soccer League) season hasn’t been the best, because the guys’ heads are already at nationals,” Bahia said. “It’s been hard to get the best of everybody in league play, and maybe some of them are waiting to turn on that switch when we get to nationals. And that’s been the same thing with other B.C. teams that have gone there. We’ll see.”

The team’s 20-man roster includes, in alphabetical order, back Parminder Bahia, midfielder Mark Baldisimo, back Brendan Campbell, midfielder Adam Costley, back Gurjit Dhaliwal, goalkeeper Amarjit Dhinsa, midfieler Yassin Essa, forward Jagminder Gill, midfielder Chetan Jhooty, back Diaz Kambere, wing Javid Khan, wing Shabaz Khattra, back Jacob Lensky, forward Azad Palani, back Nicholas Pineda, back Jagminder Sajan, midfielder Dilpreet Samra, goalkeeper Andip Singh, midfielder Reynold Stewart and back Jasdeep Toor.

CLICK HERE for roster details at nationals.

tom.zillich@thenownewspaper.com

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Daily update on the pandemic in Surrey, White Rock and beyond

APRIL 2: Six new COVID-19 deaths: provincial health officer

Thousands of ‘PPE’ donated in Surrey, where one care home is ‘preparing for the worst’

SafeCare BC’s Operation Protect drive involves drop-off dates in Guildford

Psychologist’s advice on parenting in the pandemic

SFU psychology prof Dr. Tanya Broesch, with expertise in child development, discusses short and long-term impacts COVID-19 pandemic is having on children and parents alike

‘Shocking decision’: Surrey soccer club won’t offer refunds to 350 teams for cancelled tourney

Registration fees would top $171K for Surrey Mayor’s Cup, called off due to COVID-19

Bayside rugby director makes pitch for season shift

Andy Blackburn suggests COVID-19 cancellation could be impetus for BC Rugby change

Trudeau rejects mandatory stay-at-home order for now; COVID deaths up

The virus has now infected more than 10,000 Canadians and cost 130 their lives

B.C. health care workers gain access to virtual health care options

During COVID-19 many clinics have closed, leaving health care workers with nowhere to turn

Tax collectors, auditors to help field ‘historic’ numbers of benefit-seeking callers

‘If you work for CRA, people think we are just there to take money from your pockets.’

Cowichan couple won’t self-isolate after returning from overseas

New law requires 14 days of self-isolation when returning to Canada

Family uses social media to help truckers find places to eat during pandemic

Restaurants Serving Drivers in Western Canada seeks to provide a list of places open for drivers

Advocates sound alarm over COVID-19 limiting access to contraceptives, abortion

The COVID-19 outbreak has hit sexual-health services from almost every angle

Abbotsford man who tries to start gas-station fight gets sprayed with gasoline

Suspect returns with knife and throws it at victim, but is quickly arrested by police

Abbotsford family of 5 who was stuck in Vietnam is now back home

Janzen family sends ‘huge and heartfelt’ thank you to everyone who helped

Most Read

l -->