Halifax and Winnipeg to meet in Challenge Trophy final
Posted on 9 October 2017 in ↳ Challenge Trophy
Western Halifax FC will meet FC Winnipeg Lions in the 2017 Toyota National Championships Challenge Trophy championship final. The two sides won their respective groups to advance to the gold medal match on Teck Finals Day in Surrey, British Columbia.
Winnipeg defeated Fredericton Picaroons Reds 2:1 to clinch their berth in the final. Winnipeg went undefeated with three wins and one draw to finish on ten points. By winning Group B, they are guaranteed to win their fourth national medal since 1996. It is the Lions first trip to the championship match since they won it all in 2002.
Halifax stole a draw in the dying moments against Saskatoon HUSA Alumni to earn the single point they needed to win group A and qualify for their first ever Challenge Trophy final. Like Winnipeg, Halifax went undefeated with three wins and one draw.
This will be the first time winners from Manitoba and Nova Scotia will face each other in the national final. Halifax King of Donair were the only Nova Scotia winners back in 2001, while Winnipeg Hellas FC were the last team from Manitoba to win it all back in 2009. This also marks the first-ever meeting between Western Halifax FC and FC Winnipeg Lions.
Saskatoon, undefeated with two wins and two draws, will face Durham Celtic in the bronze-medal match. The two clubs last played each other in 2011, a 2:1 win for Saskatoon.
Group A – Holy Cross SC (NL) 1:4 (BC) Vancouver Club Inter FC
Milad Mehrabi scored a hat trick and nearly had a fourth if not for missed penalty kick saved by Thomas Pieroway. Bryan Fong also scored for Vancouver, Jake Warren replied for Holy Cross.
Group A – Saskatoon HUSA Alumni FC (SK) 1:1 (NS) Western Halifax FC
Steven Delong struck first for Saskatoon early in the match. Wes Hawley flicked on a Danny LeBlanc throw in to Jhonattan Cordoba who headed home the equalizer in the last minute of regulation. Man of the match honors were Danny LeBlanc for Halifax, Brandon Holmes for Saskatoon.
Group B – FC Winnipeg Lions (MB) 2:1 (NB) Fredericton Picaroons Reds
Brendan Rattai and Anthony Lourenco scored for Winnipeg. Jared Murphy scored a wonder free kick from nearly 30 yards out off the post and in for Fredericton. A.J. Naumiuk was superb once again, setting up the second goal for Winnipeg.
Group B – Durham Celtic FC (ON) 8:0 (YU) Whitehorse Yukon Selects FC
Mark Van Beek scored a hat trick, Colin Keay scored a brace. Jean-Pierre Marchant, Dennis Palmer and Dustin Dinis each notched one.
2017 Toyota National Championships
Canada Soccer’s Toyota National Championships run 4-9 October 2017 in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Calgary, Alberta, and Surrey, British Columbia. At all age levels, the Toyota National Championships provide a meaningful soccer experience for host cities and participating teams, as well as the players, coaches, support staff, officials, and volunteers.