Sunday evening, the Montreal Carabins and the Trinity Western Spartans competed for the national title at Varsity Centre in a rematch of the 2009 championship game between the same teams at the same venue. In the end, the Spartans repeated their victory with a 1–0 final score.
The game remained scoreless through the first half, with both teams’ defense holding sway.
In the second half, the aggressive play of both teams became apparent. In the 53 minute, Trinity Western took a very close shot, but the ball just missed the net. Montreal midfielder Constance De Chantal Dumont took another shot in the 56 minute, but one again was unsuccessful.
Finally in the 59 minute the tie was broken and star forward Krista Gommeringer scored the only goal of the game for the Spartans, taking advantage of the lack of defense around the Montreal net, and assisted by Alicia Tesan.
With a goal on the scoreboard, the game became much more aggressive, with a lot of pushing coming from the Carabins. Emotions were getting to the team, made apparent by rookie Lyssa Guilbault’s constant physicality, and by fellow rookie Virginie Labossière arguing with the official.
Trinity Western seemed nervous at times with the Carabins’ strong offense posing a threat, but they held their ground and managed to prevent Montreal from scoring through the rest of the game.
Spartans head coach Graham Roxburgh acknowledged the challenges that the Carabins posed for his team. “They created a lot of problems for us that we were struggling to deal with but sometimes good teams figure out ways to win.”
Trinity Western’s Vanessa Kovacs took a beating from the Carabins but managed to strongly compete throughout the match. At the end of the game, Kovacs was awarded with the titles of game MVP, tournament all-star, and tournament MVP.
“Vanessa’s one of the best players in the country,” stated Roxburgh. “She’s just battled so hard through adversaries and injuries and frustration. She never quits… She’s the heart and soul of the midfield.”
This is the Spartans second straight national title, and their fifth title in the past 10 seasons, lead by Roxburgh, who just completed his 15th season with the team.