The UBC Okanagan men’s soccer team will look to build upon a strong 2017 season this fall as the youthful Heat hope to return to the playoffs. Head coach Dante Zanatta will be at the helm once again for the Heat in his eighth season with the squad.
A favourable early schedule with three of their first four matches on their home turf will give the team a chance to build some momentum before the season kicks in high-gear. The team will open up with back-to-back home games on Aug. 25 and 26 against Trinity Western and UFV respectively. Labour Day weekend the squad will face-off against rivals Thompson Rivers in a home-and-home on Friday Aug. 31 in Kamloops and then Sunday, Sept. 2 in Kelowna.
The Heat will be in for a tough road trip the following weekend as they travel to face the powerhouse UBC Thunderbirds and follow that up with a game against the University of Victoria Vikes. The men’s squad will continue its stint away from home the next weekend as they travel to Alberta to face-off with both the University of Lethbridge and the Mount Royal Cougars.
After two straight weekends away from home, the squad will return to the Nonis Sports Field on September 21st when they host the MacEwan Griffins that afternoon. Two days later The Saskatchewan Huskies will square-off with the Heat in Kelowna as the Heat will look to match their 5-1 win against the Huskies last season.
The Heat will play two more road games before their bye weekend which is Oct. 5 to 7. They will travel to Prince George the following weekend to face the Cougars in back-to-back games. The Final weekend of the regular season will see the Heat hosting the Victoria Vikes and UBC Thunderbirds in back-to-back games in the final two regular season games of the 2018 men’s soccer campaign.
The top four teams from the the Prairie and Pacific Division will qualify for the Canada West playoffs with the top two seeds in each division hosting the quarter-final games. The Final Four will be hosted by the highest remaining Prairie seed and if none make it the highest Pacific seed will host. The Final Four will be contested on Nov. 3 and 4.
The following weekend the UBC Thunderbirds will play host to the USPORTS National Championship to wrap up the 2018 men’s soccer season.
Top 4 teams in each division qualify for playoffs. Due to teams playing a different number of regular season games (ie. 15, or 16), the divisional standings are sorted using winning percentage.
After missing the playoffs by just four points last season, the Heat women’s soccer team will look to rebound and make a run once again at the Canada West postseason.
It will be a little later start to the season for the women’s squad compared to the men, as they open up the season on Sept. 8 against Prince George in Kelowna. The following day they will host MacEwan before they play the next four games on the road.
A trip to Alberta the following weekend will see the team take on both the Mount Royal Cougars and Alberta Pandas in back-to-back games and the schedule doesn’t get much easier, as the next weekend they travel to face the UBC Thunderbirds and UVIC Vikes. The T-Birds and Vikes finished second and third respectively last season in the Pacific division so it will be a tough task to grab points from those two teams away from home.
After three weeks away from home, the Heat will return to the Nonis sports field on Sept. 29, when they square off against the University of the Fraser Valley Cascades. Another home game will following on that Sunday, as a very talented Trinity Western Spartans team will make the trip to the Okanagan for a Sunday matinee game.
The first week of October marks rivalry weekend for the team, as they will travel to Kamloops on a Thursday night to face the WolfPack and then return home on the Saturday to once again face their rivals. This game will count towards the Presidents Cup Trophy which is awarded to the school with the most wins in all three Canada West sports (basketball, soccer, volleyball, and now cross country) throughout the season.
The Heat’s final three games of the regular season include a home date with the Winnipeg Wesmen, and two road games, in a long road trip to Edmonton and then Prince George on the same weekend, against the MacEwan Griffins and UNBC Timberwolves.
The top six teams from both the pacific and prairie division will qualify for the Canada West playoffs which start on Oct. 26. The top two seeds in each division earn a bye for the first round of the playoffs and will host the quarterfinal matchups. The Final four will be hosted by the highest remaining Pacific Division seed on Nov. 2 to 4. The 2018 USPORTS National Championship will take place in Ottawa, ON from Nov. 8 to 11.