The Clearwater Secondary School boy’s soccer team, Clearwater Raiders, won the 2022 Hope soccer championship on Oct.15.
“We came to this tournament with the goal of getting all of our players lots of game time, having fun and preparing for the all important Okanagan Championships next week,” said Coach Ryan Wilkes.
“Winning or placing was not on our radar, however all 16 players who joined us on this trip contributed fantastically to push the team over the line in today’s finals!”
In the first game against Williams Lake, the Raiders were on the wrong side of a 1-0 score line at half time, after Williams Lake converted a penalty (the only goal scored on Raiders in open play for the whole tournament!).
Raiders rallied in the second half, and Soren Coates was able to lash the ball into the net after some intense Raiders pressure! The game ended 1-1 and headed to a shootout.
Ethan Smith, Coates, Devin Holland and Kalan Priede all clinically converted their shots, and Reegan Willms saved two of the Williams Lake shots for a 4-2 PK win and a place in the final against league rivals Ashcroft.
After a tight first half, CSS kept up their team play and drew a penalty which Coates calmly converted. From then on Raiders controlled the game well and a beautiful through ball from Danny Gontcharov was dispatched brilliantly by Lucas Taniguti to see Raiders win the game 2-0.
In the same Hope tournament, CSS also played and won against Prince George and Merritt.
CSS will be heading to Kamloops for the Okanagan Regionals Oct. 20-21.