The UBC Okanagan Heat defeated the visiting University of Lethbridge Pronghorns by a final score of 1-0 in men’s soccer competition Sunday afternoon at Nonis Field in Kelowna.
For the second straight afternoon UBC Okanagan won in entertaining fashion very late into the match, both days freshman forward Zach Rachynski was the hero hitting his second consecutive game-winner.
In the 87th minute, second year Heat forward Tyler Shalansky had a chance to score on a long lead pass that took him just inside the penalty area, but a challenge from Lethbridge keeper Nolan French resulted in a collision.. The ensuing penalty kick from Cole Kingzett was stopped by French, who made a diving save, but the rebound ended up in a scrum in the box before Rachynski got a foot on it and buried in the bottom right corner.
Heat keeper Mitch McCaw earned his second clean sheet of the season, stopping seven shots on goal in Sunday afternoon’s contest. He was steadily tested late, with a number of Lethbridge chances coming in the 6 minutes of stoppage time at the end of the match.
The best scoring chances for Lethbridge came late in the match, with Pronghorn midfielder Chris Rushworth putting two strong shots on goal in the 84th and 93rdminutes, and forward Kendell Wiens putting a header just wide in the final minute of extra time.
The Lethbridge Pronghorns named senior midfielder Domenic Rigaux their MVP for the match, and the UBC Okanagan Heat selected freshman defender Spencer Young.
Zach Rachynski has a great start to his Canada West career out of working hard to be in the right place at the right time. The Kamloops product now has two goals scored on the season and in his Canada West career. His first goal yesterday was when he tipped the ball past Calgary’s keeper off a great and sneaky feed from Spencer Young on a free kick.
With their resulting record of 3-2-1 on the season, UBC Okanagan will move up to a tie with UFV for third spot in Canada West’s Pacific Division. Lethbridge, now owning a record of 2-5-1, remain in fourth place in the conference’s Prairie division.
The Heat men will play their next match on Saturday, September 24 when they travel to play the University of Alberta and battle the Golden Bears in Edmonton. The Lethbridge men’s side will also play their next match next Saturday, when they host the University of Victoria Vikes.