Spartans down Vikes to win Canada West title
Krista Gommeringer showed why she won the Canada West rookie of the year award earlier in the week, popping in a pair of goals as the Trinity Western Spartans beat the Victoria Vikes 2-1 to capture their second straight Canada West banner.
"We are delighted to win Canada West," said coach Graham Roxburgh.
"It is a great achievement to win it back-to-back because there are great team and great competition in this league."
Gommeringer scored in the 25th and 68th minutes, respectively, on Saturday night at Trinity Western's Rogers Field.
Victoria Vikes' Carsen Machin cut the lead to 2-1 in the 75th minute, but that would be all the scoring.
Gommeringer's first goal saw her intercept a Victoria pass between the back-line, create some space and then sent a hard shot past the Vikes' Stephanie Parker.
Her second goal came after a beautiful pass from midfielder Isabella Di Trocchio to go in alone on the Victoria net. And she made no mistake in burying her second of the game.
Victoria got one goal back when Machin connected on a Mallory Hackett corner kick to set up a frantic finish which required Kristen Funk to come up with two of her four saves.
Roxburgh said the key this season — the Spartans won the regular season title with a 11-1-0 record — was staying together.
"Everybody staying on the same page and realizing they have a crucial role," he said.
Both Trinity Western and Victoria were already assured of spots in this week's CIS national championships, which the Vikes are hosting in Victoria.
"Now the challenge is how, with a very banged up team, do we win nationals," Roxburgh said.
The Spartans open in the quarter-finals against the Laurier Golden Hawks on Thursday (Nov. 8).
Trinity Western is making their fourth appearance at nationals in the past five years, and prior to last year, the Spartans had won the Gladys Bean Memorial Trophy in their previous three trips.
In the Canada West semifinals on Friday, Natalie Boyd and Alicia Tesan struck for second-half goals while Funk made one save for her 11th shutout of the season in a 2-0 win over the Regina Cougars.
Boyd was named the Canada West most valuable player.
"Natalie's energy and her competitive spirit, and her work rate, her intelligence and her overall ability on the ball just makes her an important player for us," Roxburgh said.
Scott Stewart/TWU Athletics
Trinity Western Spartans Natalie Boyd was named the Canada West MVP over the weekend as the Spartans won their second straight conference championship.