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

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

 

Just Posted

Surrey Fire Service battled a dock fire along the Fraser River late Friday night (June 18). It was on Musqueam Drive, near Industrial Road, around 10:45 p.m. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
Fire engulfs dock on Surrey side of the Fraser River

Dock has reportedly been unused for a long time

A mixed-use development with 69 market rental units and 10 commercial units is proposed for the 2300-block of King George Boulevard. (Thinkspace rendering)
Pair of South Surrey apartment proposals move forward

Council gives third reading to rezoning applications for market-rental and residential projects

Launched in January, Uplift Canada was founded by Tsawwassen resident Maggie Larocque. (submitted photo)
Surrey shelters get clothing collected June 26 by Uplift Canada

Book a pickup on website of the new non-profit, founded by Delta resident

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

A lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018.THE CANADIAN PRESS
No winning ticket sold for Friday’s $70 million Lotto Max jackpot

The huge jackpot has remained unclaimed for several weeks now

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Most Read