A narrow 4-3 defeat to Lakehill FC on Saturday, Feb. 3 has left the Comox Valley United soccer team in a dangerous position heading into its last game of the regular season.
The Comox Valley side sits ninth in the 10-team Vancouver Island Soccer League first division. With the bottom two teams being relegated to the second division next season, the “Reds” have it all to play for in their final game.
Only a win will give CVU a chance to stay in division one next year. The team’s final game will be at home Saturday against Bays United at the Vanier Turf. Bays is in seventh place in division one, and will head into next weekend’s game on a confident note after defeating last-place Vantreights FC 6-1 on Feb. 2.
But a win on its own will not be enough to guarantee the Comox Valley safety from relegation; United must also hope that fourth-place Gorge FC can beat the VI Wave next week as well. The Wave currently sits one place above United in the standings.
(The Wave currently has 17 points, while United has 15 points. A win is worth three points).
Only under those circumstances can Comox Valley United leapfrog the Wave and keep themselves in Vancouver Island’s top soccer league for next season.
For many players on the Comox Valley’s top soccer team, the situation seems all too familiar.
The 2016-17 VISL season ended on a similar note for United, who only stayed in the top division following a relegation playoff victory over Westcastle United.
After heading into the Christmas break on a two-game win streak, the return to league play in 2018 has proven difficult for Comox Valley United.
The team has had to make the long trek down Highway 19 to Victoria for three games in a row, and has lost all three.
United fell 4-2 to Westcastle United on Jan. 20, 3-0 to Vic West FC on Jan. 27 and 4-3 to Lakehill last weekend.
Kick-off for next Saturday’s game at the Vanier Turf field is set for 6 p.m.