Dinos await Spartans in quarter-finals
A second-place finish means the Trinity Western Spartans have a date with the Dinos.
The Spartans men's soccer team played to a pair of draws — 0-0 on Friday at Rogers Field on the TWU campus and then 2-2 at Thunderbird Stadium — against UBC to close out the regular season.
The Thunderbirds (11-0-3), by virtue of the first result, had clinched top spot in the Canada West Pacific Division and earned a bye into the Canada West semifinals this weekend in Edmonton.
The Spartans (9-1-3), ranked seventh in the country, now face the Calgary Dinos on Nov. 1 in the quarter-finals.
Trinity Western had needed the full six points to overtake the T-Birds for top spot. But after that didn't happen on Friday night, leaving Saturday's result meaningless for the standings.
The Spartans got goals from Andre Costa and Nathaniel Tuner while the T-Birds responded with tallies from Paul Clerc and Sean Haley.
"Given the weather, it was never going to be pretty soccer," said Spartans coach Pat Rohla.
"Both teams used players who hadn't got many minutes and unloaded the bench.
"It was kind of scrambly in the first half, but in the second half we were a little better and kept more possession.
"Overall, it's tough to get points at UBC, so we are happy with that."
The Spartans twice came back from one-goal deficits to salvage the tie.
Clerc opened the scoring in the 15th minute, heading in a UBC corner kick.
Turner scored the first TWU goal as he was the beneficiary of a defensive misplay from UBC that sent him in on goal alone and he made no mistake, drawing the keeper out before burying the goal.
UBC pulled ahead 2-1 with a breakaway goal from Haley just before the half.
In the second half, Andrew Phillips carried the ball up the left wing, beat his man with a slick dribble to gain a step and then swung a low cross into the box, which Costa buried to make it 2-2.
In Friday's game, UBC dominated the first half but the second half was much more level.
Evan Lowther made five saves while UBC keeper Luke O'Shea stopped all four shots on goal.
The game marked the first time all season the T-Birds failed to find the back of the net.
"I think we showed people that we can play with them," Rohla said afterwards.
The Dinos (6-6-3) were the third-place finisher in the Prairie Division and will face the Spartans on Nov. 1. The teams played to a 1-1 draw back in September.
The other quarter-final features Saskatchewan (6-5-4) against Victoria (6-6-2), while top-seed Alberta (9-2-4) and UBC receive byes into the semifinals.
The top two teams advance to the CIS national championships.