Reds repeat as New Brunswick provincial champions

The Fredericton Picaroons have again won the New Brunswick provincial men's title to qualify for the Canadian Soccer Association National Championships. The Reds, as they are known, will again represent New Brunswick in the senior men's Challenge Trophy competition. This year's edition runs 3-8 October 2012 in Winnipeg, MB.

After a bye out of the first round, the Reds then won 3:1 over Edmundston in the provincial semi-final on 17 August. Just over a week later, the Reds won 1:0 over Office Interiors Wanderers (also from Fredericton) in the 25 August provincial final. Ken Morrison, a national champion in 2010, scored the lone goal of the final in the 12th minute. Goalkeeper Adam Grant, meanwhile, stopped a penalty kick in the 60th minute.

"It was a good game and I think the fans enjoyed it," said Reds coach Dave Rouse. "Our league is just in its second year and it is continuing to grow. The league competition is important as it helps (the provincial champion) prepare for the National Championships."

In the provincial final, the Reds starting XI featured Adam Grant in goal, Karel Prickett at right back, Brad Cowperthwaite and Adolphe Iraguha at centre back, Jason Rouse at left back, Ken Morrison and Patrick Burtt as holding midfielders, Amir Razak, Eric Karosan and J.C. Campeau as attacking midfielders, and Will Allen up front. As substitutes, Graham Ashworth, Jon Crossland, Ali Devereaux, Alex Hairat, Victor Karosan, Rod Ramsden and Galen Smith also played in the final. Joe Crossland, Max Ferlette and Zack Mollins-Bidlake dressed but did not feature; Russell Carson, Rory Keys and Ben Law were unavailable because of injury.

This marks the third time in a row that the Reds have represented New Brunswick in the Challenge Trophy competition, albeit over a six-year period (2007, 2011 and 2012). Soccer New Brunswick did not send a club to the Challenge Trophy competition for three years from 2008 to 2010. 

Of note, Ashworth, Morrison and Prickett were Challenge Trophy winners in 2010 with Prince Edward Island's Churchill Arms. All three, however, had previously represented New Brunswick's Reds at the Challenge Trophy competition in 2007. Also of note, Winnipeggers Campeau and Hairat are making a homecoming at the 2012 Challenge Trophy competition.