Gorge FC's Jesse Johnston-Hill clears a corner kick with teammates

Gorge FC's Jesse Johnston-Hill clears a corner kick with teammates

Gorge FC into B Cup soccer final with win over Magnuson Mariners

High schooler Olivia Cass scored the winning goal as Gorge FC defeated the Magnuson Mariners 1-0 in B Cup provincial soccer

High schooler Olivia Cass scored the winning goal as Gorge FC defeated the Magnuson Mariners 1-0 in extra time at Hampton Park on Sunday.

The semifinal win advances Gorge into the B Cup women’s provincial soccer final May 11 at Royal Athletic Park.

“We could have pressed on the ball better but last week we beat (North Shore) in penalty kicks, so it’s nice not to have to go to PKs, you never like doing that,” said Gorge coach Rick Zaharia.

Cayley Zaharia helped set up the Cass goal about eight minutes into overtime. Gorge keeper Kailee Mann earned the clean sheet.

“It would have been nice to get the results in regulation but they had some good players, they had some speed in the middle and we have to credit them.”

It’s the fourth time in five years this Gorge team, with Rick Zaharia coaching, has qualified for provincials.

It’s the first time they’ve made the final. And what a year to do it, as the provincial A, B and Masters/Classics (over-35) and under-21 Cup finals are all at Westhills Stadium on May 11.

Win or lose in the B.C. final, Gorge is on its way to the premier division of the Lower Island Women’s Soccer Association next year. The team won 12 and drew once in 15 games to win the Div. 1 table and earn a promotion.

Cass, a Grade 12 student at Spectrum Community school, is the youngest, though there are four more under-18 Gorge products on the squad this year. The youth is countered with a trio of classics eligible players (over-35), and a core of 22 year olds.In A Cup play on Sunday the Castaways FC fell to Surrey United while Prospect Lake fell at home to North Shore.

“I guess we’re holding the torch (for local women’s soccer) at the upcoming provincial finals,” Zaharia said.

Gorge’s classics team will also appear in the final. Gorge earns a bye as the only classics team in the region.

sports@vicnews.com