EDMONTON – Calgary's Lauren Houghton and UBC's Caleb Clarke are the Canada West first stars for the period ending September 18 after helping their teams to a pair of victories over the weekend.
- Calgary Dino goalkeeper Lauren Houghton is the CW women’s first star of the week, while UBC Thunderbird Caleb Clarke is the CW men’s first star of the week
- UBC's Shoshanah Seumanutafa, and Victoria's Anna Mollenhauer are the other women’s stars
- UFV's Gurmaan Jhaj, and UNBC's Francesco Bartolillo are the other men’s stars
Houghton was unbeatable Friday and Saturday, as the Dinos earned 1-0 road victories over the Victoria Vikes, and UBC Thunderbirds. With the wins, Calgary moved to 3-1-0 on the season and currently sits second in the CW Prairie Division.
On the men's side, Clarke continued his torrid scoring pace, as the former Vancouver Whitecap scored a goal Saturday against Saskatchewan, before adding a trio the following day versus Calgary. The Richmond, B.C. product is tied for the CW lead CW in both goals (6) and points (8).
Houghton and Clarke now move forward as the conference nominees for the U SPORTS athletes of the week.
Game log: Friday, Sept. 14 – seven-save shutout in 1-0 road win over Victoria / Saturday, Sept. 15 – six-save shutout in 1-0 road win over UBC.
Since surrendering a pair of goals in her team’s season opener, Lauren Houghton has been unbeatable in net for the University of Calgary Dinos.
The second-year goalkeeper started both games for the Dinos on their B.C. road trip over the weekend, and turned away all 13 shots she faced from the Victoria Vikes and UBC Thunderbirds.
Both games ended in 1-0 wins for Calgary, which wouldn’t have been possible without strong performances by Houghton. She made seven stops against the Vikes and turned away six attempts the following night from the Thunderbirds.
Houghton now has three consecutive clean sheets, having blanked the Mount Royal Cougars back on Sept. 9.
The Dinos women’s soccer team goes from one end of the conference to another for their next games, as they face the Winnipeg Wesmen, followed by the Manitoba Bisons, from Sept. 22-23 in Winnipeg.
Game log: Saturday, Sept. 15 – goal in a 3-0 road win over Saskatchewan / Sunday, Sept. 16 – three goals and five shots in 4-1 road win over Calgary.
UBC’s star forward Caleb Clarke dominated the pitch Sunday with a hat trick to power the Thunderbirds to a fifth straight win, 4-1 over the Calgary Dinos. Just a day earlier, Clarke scored his third goal of the season to give UBC some added insurance in a 3-0 victory over the Saskatchewan Huskies in Saskatoon.
Clarke’s four-goal weekend has him tied atop the Canada West leaderboard with six. The Richmond, B.C. product is also tied for the conference lead in points with eight.
Thanks in part to Clarke’s early season heroics, the Thunderbirds find themselves atop the Pacific division with an undefeated record of 5-0-1. Besides leading the conference with a 2.67 goals per game average, the ‘Birds have been defensively solid allowing a Canada West best 0.5 goals against per game.
UBC will put their five-game win streak on the line back home this weekend against a pair of Prairie Division opponents, as they host the Mount Royal Cougars Friday night followed by the MacEwan Griffins on Saturday.
Game log: Friday, Sept. 14 – two tries and a convert (12 total points) in 22-7 home win over Lethbridge.
UBC’s star centre Shoshanah Seumanutafa shone in a 22-7 win over the visiting Lethbridge Pronghorns Friday afternoon, scoring two tries and adding a convert in the Thunderbirds’ second straight win to start the season.
The second-year Arts student from Vancouver is tied for the Canada West scoring lead with 16 points through the first two weeks of the season and led all players Week 2.
The Thunderbirds sit atop the CW standings with a 2-0 start to the season having scored four tries in each of their two victories. UBC puts their perfect record to the test this Sunday when they host the Calgary Dinos (1-0).
Game log: Saturday, Sept. 15 – three goals and six shots in 3-0 road win over Mount Royal / Sunday, Sept. 16 – goal and four shots in 3-2 road loss to Alberta.
Gurmaan Jhaj continued his early-season scoring spree as the University of the Fraser Valley men’s soccer team turned in a pair of solid performances on the road.
On Saturday, the fourth-year forward from Aldergrove, B.C. spearheaded a lethal Cascades attack, scoring all three goals as UFV blanked the Mount Royal Cougars 3-0. Jhaj tied the UFV team record for goals in a game, joining Sasa Plavsic (Oct. 27, 2012 vs. Mount Royal) and Daniel Davidson (Oct. 9, 2015 vs. Trinity Western) as Cascades to score a hat trick in Canada West play.
On Sunday against the U SPORTS No. 8-ranked Alberta Golden Bears, Jhaj once again sparkled. In the 33rd minute, he spotted Alberta keeper Connor James off his line and unleashed an audacious strike from 41 yards out that arced over James’s outstretched fingertips and under the crossbar. The goal – surely a candidate for goal of the year in U SPORTS – gave UFV a 2-0 lead, but the host Golden Bears rallied for a 3-2 victory.
Jhaj now holds a share of the Canada West lead for both goals (six) and points (eight), and he’s helped the Cascades rise to third place in the Pacific Division with a 3-2-1 record.
The UFV side returns home this week for a Friday date with the Saskatchewan Huskies (8 p.m., MRC Sports Complex, Canada West TV).
Game log: Saturday, Sept. 15 – 70 minutes played in 2-2 road tie with UBC / Sunday, Sept. 16 – 70 minutes played in 0-0 road tie with UBC.
The Vikes women’s field hockey team earned two ties against the seven-time defending U SPORTS national champions, the UBC Thunderbirds over the Sept. 15-16 weekend in Vancouver.
Second-year Vikes defender Anna Mollenhauer was arguably the most effective player on the field for both teams. Despite not registering on the stat sheet, the Victoria native played big parts of the Vikes offence and defence. Mollenhauer, also a part of the team’s leadership group, was the only Vikes field player to play all 70 minutes of both games.
On offence, Mollenhauer was the main shooter at the top of the penalty corner battery, launched several distance aerials to spring forward attacks, including a few breakaways, and single-handedly crafted her way through multiple UBC players.
Defensively Mollenhauer organized the back field, provided some key stops on penalty corners and made some big tackles to spring counter-attacks.
The Vikes have not beat UBC since 2015 but a pair of ties early in the season show great promise for the young Vikes squad, who are back in action this weekend when they travel to Calgary to take on the Dinos Saturday and Sunday.
Game log: Sunday, Sept. 16 – two goals, an assist, and three shots in 3-0 road win over Saskatchewan.
Playing just a single game over the weekend, Francesco Bartolillo was in on every Timberwolves goal, while breaking a UNBC Men’s soccer record in the process.
The fifth-year midfielder’s two goals Saturday against Saskatchewan moved him to the top of the Timberwolves all-time goals list, passing his former teammate, Canada West all-star Tofa Fakunle.
Bartolillo, who serves as the T-Wolves captain, has been instrumental through the early parts of the season, with six points in just four games. He’s paced UNBC in goals (3), assists (3), points (6), and shots (8), and can now add the distinction of the most goals by any player to ever wear UNBC gold.
The Timberwolves return to action this Friday with a home date against the Lethbridge Pronghorns.