" /> Pacific Westestern Athletic Association

Golden Mariners

Golden Mariners

The VIU Mariners are the women’s PACWEST Provincial soccer champions after defeating the Douglas Royals 1-0 in the gold medal game Saturday evening.

The defending champion Royals came into provincials as the number one seed, hoping to add a second gold medal in as many years. The Royals were riding high after beating the Capilano Blues in the semi-finals 2-1 on Friday night.

That momentum wasn’t enough for the Royals to hold off the Mariners though, as midfielder Madeline Dawson opened the scoring with what would prove to be the game-winner in the 29th minute.

The Royals came out of the half with determination, consistently driving the ball into the Mariners’ end and sustaining pressure. The final few moments were tense for both sides, as the Royals desperately tried to find the tying goal, forcing the Mariners to weather the storm hold off the rally.

Despite a furious push at the end, the Royals fell short and the Mariners rushed onto the field victorious at the final whistle. Mariners’ goalkeeper Emily Rowbotham kept the defending champs off the scoreboard, and was awarded player of the game honours.

This is the Mariners’ second gold in the past few years, and third medal. They took home the provincial title in 2014 and earned silver in 2015.

With the victory, the Mariners will be off to Nationals to represent the PACWEST conference. Despite taking home silver, the Royals’ season isn’t over yet. They will be joining the Mariners at Nationals as a wild-card team.

Two Royals’ players were named to the tournament All-Star team. Sam Kell was named top defender, along with teammate Michelle Wessa as top midfielder.

With gold medals in tow, two VIU Mariners took home additional honours. Rachel Jones was named tournament MVP. In addition to her gold medal player of the game award, Emily Rowbotham was named to the All-Star team as top goalkeeper.

Capilano Blues’ Taylor Einhorn rounds out the All-Star team as top forward.

Photo courtesy of Vancouver Sports Pictures