KAMLOOPS - What a difference 24 hours makes. After coming out with a jittery performance in their Canada West men’ s soccer league opener, the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack looked like a different team on Sunday, Sept. 13.
Ryan Glanville (third year, forward, Williams Lake, B.C.) had a pair of goals leading the WolfPack to a 3-0 shutout over the visiting University of Fraser Valley Cascades at Hillside Stadium. The result left both squads at one-and-one.
“I think the guys realized that they didn’t play to their potential yesterday,” said WolfPack head coach John Antulov referring to TRU’s 3-1 defeat at the hands of Trinity Western. “Not a lot had to be said. They did what they had to do today. You saw in the first half today that in the centre of the park, everyone was battling and we were winning most of the balls. I said before the match to the guys that in a worst case scenario, battle and show commitment and don’t take anything off. They did that.”
Glanville opened the scoring four minutes into the contest when he got a pass from Colton Walker (third year, midfield, Sicamous, B.C.) and pounced on a loose ball for his second goal of the season.
Then in the 28th minute, the Cascades turned over the ball and Glanville sent a howitzer top upper corner on Fraser Valley keeper Alex Skrzeta (second year, Coquitlam, B.C.).
“That is what we expected from Ryan when we brought him in here,” Antulov explained. “Today he really showed his leadership and commitment to the program. He picked everyone up and took a lead role in this game. He played fantastic.”
Glanville was named the McDonalds/TRU Bookstore “Leader of the Pack” Player of the Match.
Fraser Valley had a great chance in the 32nd minute. James Najman (fourth year, forward, Surrey, B.C.) got his head on the ball and it just skirted over the WolfPack cage guarded by Travis Froehlich (5th year, Revelstoke, B.C.).
He made six saves to earn his first shutout of the year. Fraser Valley had 16 shots on goal: nine in the first half. TRU managed eight shots.
In the second half, TRu added one more in the 58 th minute when Glanville set up Oriol Torres (fifth year, forward, Barcelona, Spain).
The WolfPack were back to their regular backline with the return of Corey Wallis (fifth year, Enderby, B.C.) and Finlay McPhie (second year, Vernon, B.C.). Both had sat out the season opener due to a red card picked up in the final match of 2014-15 against UBCO. Antulov praised both along with Braden Burrows (fifth year, defender, Kamloops, B.C.) who played most of the match before leaving after being banged up in a collision with the Cascades’s Najman.
“We have good depth on our back,” he said. “I think for the most part our back line played well yesterday. Having both of them back today really solidified everything. You know, they really didn’t get any opportunities until late in the match but both of Fraser Valley’s chances were offside.”
The WolfPack will have a bye next week and then play their first road matches of the season (Sept 25-26) when they visit UBC and UVIC.
Fraser Valley will host those two schools in their home opener next week (Sept 18-19).
Next home match for the WolfPack will be October 10 when they entertain the UBCO Heat at Hillside Stadium. Kick off is 7 p.m.