Ottawa Gloucester Celtic win 2016 Ontario Cup men's championship

With report from Lauren Maharaj

Ottawa Gloucester Celtic won the 2016 Ontario Cup men's championship after a 1:0 victory over Caledon FC. It marked the second time in four years that the Ottawa-based club beat Caledon FC in the provincial final, with the 2013 national champions earning a spot at the 2016 Sport Chek National Championships Challenge Trophy finals in St. John's, Newfoundland Labrador.

Gloucester Celtic substitute Alex DeCouvreur scored the lone goal late in the first half, taking five touches as he moved from the right wing into the box before firing his shot past the Caledon goalkeeper Matthew Grant. In the second half of the 10 September final, both Gerald Watt (from a free kick) and David Parkes (in the dying moments) hit the crossbar for Caledon, but to no avail as Gloucester Celtic walked away with the provincial honours.

"It was a rematch of the game we had with them three years ago, so (we knew) it was going to be a hard, physical game," said Matt Williams, head coach of Ottawa Gloucester Celtic. "We knew it was going to be a big battle (so) when we get a goal like that from one of our standout players, it's a highlight-reel goal that deserved to win a Cup final."

In 2013, Gloucester Celtic won 3:2 over Caledon FC in Oshawa. In 2016, it was once again just the one goal that separated the two teams, with this year's final played in front of 150 fans at the Ontario Soccer Centre in Vaughan.

DeCouvreur scored the lone goal with an assist from Olivier Babineau down the right side. On the strength of the winning goal, DeCouvreur was selected Gloucester's star of the match. Said Williams, "it was probably the goal of the tournament."

In the Ontario Cup final, Gloucester Celtic's starting XI featured Matt Gagnon in goal, Matt Quon at right back, Tom MacDonald and Adam Davies at centre back, Phil Sangster at left back, Brad Weinberg, Justin Dasah, and Panagiotis at midfield, Robbie Murphy and Bezick Evraire on the wings, and Joey Kewin up front. Robbie Murphy, Olivier Babineau, and hero Alex DeCouvreur featured as substitutes while Andrew Park, Kenny Caceros, Ryan Lauzon, and Rob Reid were dressed on the bench.

Ahead of the Ontario Cup final, Gloucester Celtic eliminated London Marconi in the provincial semi finals. London Marconi were two-time national champions, having followed Gloucester Celtic's 2013 Challenge Trophy title with back-to-back national titles in 2014 and 2015.

"We have a lot of confidence in ourselves to go forward and win these kind of games," said Williams.

Canada Soccer’s Sport Chek National Championships run 5-10 October 2016, with the adult amateur competitions hosted this year in St. John’s, Newfoundland Labrador. At all age levels, the Sport Check National Championships provide a meaningful soccer experience for host cities and participating teams, as well as the players, coaches, support staff, officials, and volunteers.