A pair of callups from the U17 ranks helped the Cowichan Outlaws draw even with the top team in Div. 2 of the Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association last Sunday.
Keira Martin capitalized on a penalty kick awarded after her U17 Gold teammate Jada Hill was taken down in the box in the first half, tying the score at 1-1 as Cowichan took a point on the road against the Saanich Fusion Cascades.
“Keira stepped up with confidence on the PK,” Cowichan coach Neall Rowlings reported. “Bottom left corner, like a pro.”
Martin and Hill were the only two subs available for the Outlaws, who got off to a rough start as they conceded a goal and two significant injuries to core players within the first 10 minutes.
“We started to play much better soccer down 1-0,” Rowlings said.
Kerynne Bain was nearly flawless in the Outlaws’ net as both teams had several quality scoring chances. Cowichan’s Natasha Tymo collided with the Saanich goalkeeper late in the game, and both players had to leave the game. With Tymo out, the Outlaws had to play the last seven minutes down a player, but held on to preserve the tie.
“The ball actually went in the net, but as both players were hurt, we weren’t too worried about the goal,” Rowlings said. “This many injuries in a game really hits home for me. I don’t cope well seeing soccer players in pain on either end of the field.”
Martin earned the pink hard hat as Cowichan’s Woman of the Match, reportedly saying, “This thing is so weird,” as she put it on.
“She was great in the centre of the park,” Rowlings assessed.
The match was the last in Outlaws silks for Cowichan forward Emily Lindsay, who is heading to Simon Fraser University after Christmas.
“Mixed feelings,” Rowlings said. “Super happy for her, but she will be sorely missed. We did a big send-off and it was emotional. You don’t realize how attached you become to the people who are always reliable, and are what makes the team so great. We will keep her on the roster and she is welcome to play with us at any point.”
The Outlaws will resume the season on Jan. 14 when they host Nanaimo United at David Williams Turf.