CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — The Holland Hurricanes and Crandall Chargers will take the field on Wednesday at the Terry Fox Sports Complex in Cornwall for back-to-back ACAA soccer matches under the lights.
The women will start things off at 6 p.m. with the men following at 8 p.m.
The women’s ‘Canes enter the game at 5-3-0 and in third place in the ACAA standings while the Chargers are 1-7-0 and in sixth. These teams squared off on Sept. 9 in Moncton in a game that saw the Hurricanes take the victory, 1-0.
Hurricanes wing back Megan Proctor has enjoyed success in her second stint with the women’s soccer Hurricanes. She understands the importance of every match at this point in the regular season.
“Crandall was one of the teams we played early in our season and haven’t seen since,’’ said Proctor. “They played us tough in September and it will be a challenge, but we’ve begun to hit our stride and up our pace as playoffs are getting closer. We aim to keep this up for the homestretch of the regular season.”
Head coach Kris McKinnon echoes Proctor’s thoughts heading into Wednesdays big match.
“With only four games remaining in the regular season we need to make sure we stick to what has worked for us and continue to fine tune our game plan,’’ McKinnon said. “Crandall will be a great test as they always compete hard and never give you any time on the ball.”
The Hurricanes have received strong offensive play from Kathrine McEwen (six goals) and Jade Stewart (four goals); also having a strong season has been Nicole Fergusson who has found the back of the net twice. With confidence in her team, Fergusson knows if they can do the little things right, they’ll be successful.
“If we can play with confidence and be creative on the field, our team has the tools and skills to win against anybody,” Fergusson said.
The men’s Hurricanes enter Wednesday’s game at 5-2-1 and in first place in the regular season standings; the Chargers are 1-7-0 and in sixth place. The only other matchup between the two teams this season saw the ‘Canes cruise to the 5-0 victory on Sept. 9 in Moncton.
‘Canes first-year centre back, Bobby Gamba, feels confident after a much-needed break over the long weekend.
“After dropping points in three of our last four games, I think the Thanksgiving break was needed for the team. It gave us all a chance to recharge and refocus on the rest of the season, starting with Crandall on Wednesday night.”
After starting the season 4-0-1, the ‘Canes have lost two of their last three games. Third-year midfielder Theo Ngezahayo knows the importance of playing at home.
“Whatever it takes, it’s important we play well at home,” Ngezahayo said. “We feed off our home fans and look forward to playing under the lights on Wednesday night against Crandall.”
With only four games remaining ahead of the ACAA championships later this month, each and every game is critical with the standings being so tight. Head coach Jonathan Vos is well aware of the importance of each and every match.
“With us being this late in the regular season, we want to be sure we are clicking on both sides of the ball,’’ Vos said. “Thanksgiving break was good for our players to refresh and get ready to push the rest of the way.’’
‘Canes second year keeper, Brandon Lund, is expected to get the start in goal on Wednesday night.
“After the game at UKC I think that we needed this break to help us refocus. We will need to come out strong for the last part of the season. This is where we need to prove ourselves,” Lund said.
After Wednesday night’s home games, the ‘Canes will visit the Dal AC Rams on the road on Saturday, Oct. 13, before finishing their regular season at home versus the UNBSJ Seawolves (Oct. 20) and STU Tommies (Oct. 21).
The 2018 ACAA Soccer Championships are being hosted by the MSVU Mystics in Halifax, N.S., Oct. 26-28.
The Hurricanes are hosts of the 2018 CCAA National Men’s Soccer Championship in Cornwall, Nov. 6-10.