Southridge defender Greg Ericksen battles Credo Christian’s Victory Shumbusho during the Valley final.

Southridge defender Greg Ericksen battles Credo Christian’s Victory Shumbusho during the Valley final.

Southridge Storm roll to Valley soccer title

Senior boys 'A' provincials held this week in Kamloops

Weeks ago, in their first game of the soccer season, the Southridge Storm senior boys lost to Langley’s Credo Christian Kodiaks 5-0.

They waited until last week to get their revenge.

On Oct. 27 at Credo’s home field, the Storm nabbed a Fraser Valley ‘A’ championship with a 3-1 victory over the Kodiaks, punching their ticket to provincial championships in the process.

Southridge, which played at the double-A level last season, and finished fifth in the province, entered Fraser Valleys this time around as a lower seed than they’re used to – seventh out of 12. But they got on a roll at Fraser Valleys, winning four games in a seven-day span, culminating with the game against Credo.

“We had kind of a slow start this season, and we lost that first game but we battled back,” said Southridge coach Gordon Smith.

“It was a pretty cool turn of events.”

In the final game, the Storm jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first half, then held off a Kodiak push in the second half to secure the win.

Nathan Sanghe, Jared Thind and Rowan Frost scored for the Storm, while Smith also heaped praise upon goalkeeper Landon Gill, who was not between the pipes during the team’s season-opening loss.

“He really stepped up and played really, really well,” Smith said.

Credo coach Tom VanderHorst agreed, and said Gill’s performance in net was the biggest difference between the two games.

“He was fantastic,” VanderHorst said of the netminder. “We are disappointed to lose, (but) Southridge played a great game and they deserved to win.”

Prior to the Fraser Valley final, Credo had not lost a game all season, and often won games by multiple goals.

Both teams are in Kamloops this weekend, competing at provincials. Southridge heads into the 16-team tournament seeded fourth.

“The sense I get from talking to people is that it’s going to be a wide open tournament – there isn’t one team that’s completely dominant, so anybody has a chance,” Smith said.

The provincial tournament began Thursday and wraps up with the championship game Saturday.

– with files from Gary Ahuja

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