Impact finishes fourth at U14 nationals

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St. Albert boys' soccer team falls 1-0 to Bonivital SC of Manitoba in Monday's bronze-medal playoff at Moncton, N.B.

Fourth place was the order of finish for the St. Albert Impact at the U14 National Cup in Moncton, N.B.

Monday’s bronze-medal match against Bonivital SC of Manitoba ended with a 1-0 loss for the Alberta Soccer Association Tier I boys’ champions.

The Impact’s record at the 10-team tournament was 3-2, with 13 goals and two against.

Bonivital was 4-1 while scoring 11 times and allowing three against.

The Impact and Bonivital placed second in their respective pools during the qualification phase and the losses were of 1-0 to Fraser Valley of B.C. for St. Albert and 2-0 against the Brampton East Blades of Ontario for the Winnipeg reps.

The final was 1-0 for Brampton over Fraser Valley.

The Impact posted wins of 3-0 against Dartmouth FC of Nova Scotia and St. John’s SC of Newfoundland with Ivan Hirankunda between the posts and in the last group B match crushed Hillsborough United of Prince Edward Island 7-0 Sunday for a berth in the crossover bronze playoff with Bonivital from group A.

Ousman Maheshe was the Impact’s top scorer at nationals with six on the strength of four against Hillsborough. The centre-midfielder shared second place overall in the Golden Boot scoring race for three back of the leader.

Euan Bartlett, Gausu Dukuly, Nicholas Duro, Dayne Jepsen, Adebire Omorogbe and Oliver Titchener were also credited with goals at nationals.

The Impact and Eastside FC of Saskatchewan led the tournament in yellow cards with six apiece as Dukuly and Laine Santos lead the way with two each.

The Impact entered nationals with a 17-0-2 record after finishing first in the Edmonton Interdistrict Youth Soccer Association and at provincials. In the process, the Impact surrendered only seven goals in league play and was perfect defensively at provincials. The Aug. 21 final in Calgary against Foothills was scoreless during 80 minutes of full time and 20 minutes of extra time before the Impact pulled off a heart-stopping 4-3 decision in penalty kicks to become the first St. Albert boys’ team to qualify for nationals since the 1989 gold-medal winning U18 Cougars.

The 19-player Impact roster also featured Elijah Bossio, Evan Brassard, Dominic Clarke, Luke Drapala, Letrell Dunawa, Benjamin Hartley, Jaden Kennedy, Isaac Reed, Ethan Rivest and Sam Russell.

Due to travel commitments, Impact head coach Chris Clarke was unavailable for comment about nationals before Tuesday’s press time.

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Jeff Hansen

Jeff Hansen joined the St. Albert Gazette in 1991. He writes about sports, athletes and teams from St. Albert and area.