As the days keep getting colder, Comox Valley United keeps heating up.
The local men’s soccer side posted their third straight win Saturday, beating Bays United 2-0 to take sole possession of second place in Div. 1 of the Vancouver Island Soccer League.
United netted the only goal they would need in the 25th minute when Graeme McNeill crossed the ball from the left side to Gabby Mason, who finished clinically past the keeper.
The second goal was a rocket from 30 yards out by Nick Marinus at the 35th minute. There were chances after that from both ends including a goal by Bays that was called back on an offside call in the second half, as well as a quick free kick from Comox’s Kyle Bate that just rang off the crossbar.
Mack Zirkl posted the clean sheet for Comox Valley. United’s next game is Saturday, Nov. 21 (6 p.m. Vanier Turf Field) against top-of-the-table Cowichan FC.
“This will be Fan Appreciation Night with free prizes drawn at halftime sponsored by Top Notch Soccer,” said United team rep Rob Caya.
“All you need to do is be at the game to get your name in the draw. As well, free coffee and hot chocolate will be provided by the men’s team.”
Caya notes that at halftime the team will be drawing the winning ticket from their raffle ticket sales. The prize is a two-night stay at the Kingfisher Oceanside Resort.
“We will be selling tickets at the game leading up to the halftime draw,” Caya said. Tickets are one for $2 or three for $5.
“We are looking for a big turnout from our fans as this will be our biggest game of the year so far. Admission is free and the soccer is great,” said Caya.
United (6-2-2) faces a tough test Saturday as undefeated Cowichan (8-0-2) has scored 42 goals and allowed just five against through 10 games. Patrick Nelson leads Div. 1 scoring with 15 goals (more than six other team’s totals) while Cooper Barry has bulged the onion bag 11 times (more than three other team’s totals). Sam Hutchison, the current VISL Footballer of the Week, leads the division in shutouts with six.
Zirkl is second in shutouts with three, while Grayson Chalifoux is United’s top goal scorer with four. While the stats certainly favour Cowichan, the teams played to a scoreless draw in their first meeting Sept. 19 in Cowichan, setting the stage for what indeed should be some great soccer on Nov. 21.