The Delta Coastal Selects Boys U16 capped off their season with a hard-fought and well-deserved bronze medal at the Provincial A Championships in Richmond over the weekend.
With only one sub available on the first day against the Island champion Bays United, DCS wilted in the heat, running out eventual 3-0 losers.
The bench only extended by one body on the Friday against reigning Provincial champion and Coastal Cup winner Langley United.
This time, the breaks didn’t go the way of DCS when they were needed and they went down 2-0 to signal the end of hopes of the gold medal.
However, despite having nothing but pride to play for in the final round-robin game against the league champion BC Tigers, DCS continued their great run against the strong North Surrey club with a resounding 4-2, thanks to goals from Jake Ross (2), Dan Bamgbade and a solo stunner from Jonah Jackson, who weaved past four Tigers before slotting past the keeper.
DCS has now clocked up three wins and a tie against the league champion, who went on to beat Langley in the gold medal game on Sunday.
Weary legs were obvious on both DCS and Bays United for the bronze medal game Sunday and whoever scored first was always going to have the upper hand.
Thankfully, it was DCS who grabbed it in the 15th minute via Hunter Stromberg from the penalty spot, after a great run into the box from Dan Bamgbade.
The solitary goal was enough for DCS to hang onto, despite waves of pressure from Bays in the second half.
“Although it wasn’t the medal we were hoping for, I was very happy that the boys had something to show for the improvement they’ve made this season, after finishing way down the pack the previous year,” said head coach Alan Campbell.
“I think the fact we had a very short bench over four days, had to pull in permit players, and still managed to beat the league and eventual Provincial champion and also win a bronze on the fourth day, says something about this group.
“They’ve finished a close third in the league championship and were runners-up in the Coastal Cup, so they really deserved some recognition this season.
“If they continue to improve next season, the colour of their medals may change to gold.”