Cowichan LMG struck early and often last Saturday as they racked up their most convincing victory of the young Vancouver Island Soccer League season, beating the Vancouver Island Wave 6-0 at Finlayson Park last Saturday.
“We played a lot better brand of soccer than we did in our first games,” head coach Glen Martin said.
Not only did Cowichan come up with six goals in the Div. 1 clash, they also made sure to get on the scoreboard quickly, scoring their first goal a minute in as Paddy Nelson buried his second of the year, set up by Kevan Brown, playing his first game of the season after coming back from a concussion.
Although Cowichan didn’t score for 20 minutes after that, Martin’s team was “all over them” for that span. Finally, at 22 minutes, Cooper Barry scored his first of the game and third of the season. Barry scored again at 31 minutes, and Cowichan went into halftime up 3-0.
“Absolute domination,” Martin said. “We were moving the ball quick; our passing combinations were unreal.”
At the break, Martin subbed in Luca Klotz for Stu Barker and Cam Fisher for Mason Chang, and both moves paid off.
Klotz, called up from Cowichan’s U16 team, scored in the 53rd minute, firing the ball into the top corner.
“Our young 16-year-old came through,” the coach said. “He had a great game, running up the wing.”
Ten minutes later, Barry completed the hat trick with his league-leading fifth goal of the season. Cowichan wrapped up the scoring in the 83rd minute when the ball deflected in off Fisher.
Goalkeeper Sam Hutchison recorded another clean sheet, his third in as many games as Cowichan has yet to allow a goal. The team also got a strong debut outing from midfielder Josh Cuthbert, an 18-year-old former member of the Vancouver Whitecaps youth program and the national U18 team. Govinda Innes was selected as the game MVP.
Cowichan will have a big game this Saturday, back at Finlayson against Vic West. The team could have Dan Cato back in the lineup, giving another boost to a roster that is starting to taking shape after starting small. Cowichan is tied atop Div. 1 with Comox and Gorge, but hold the tiebreaker due to goal differential.