Despite an honourary mascot – a bald eagle – briefly circling above the field, Eagle Construction couldn’t win in the U-15 finals of the Yukon Championship at FH Collins Secondary on Sunday.
Instead, Dirkbuilt Construction took the gold with a 4-2 victory over their rival construction crew.
Winning five straight games for the gold, did not resemble the season Dirkbuilt had, going into the tournament with a losing record.
“All of them played way better than average,” said Dirkbuilt coach Charlene Torgerson. “We’ve had a really rough season; a couple wins, mostly losses. This is the first time they have won so many games consecutively. They just came together for the tournament really, really well.
“They wanted to win. They said, going in, that they were going to win.”
Dirkbuilt didn’t waste time taking the lead, with Chris Torgerson tucking a shot just under the crossbar in the first minute of play. Six minutes later, he made it 2-0, putting a hard angle shot of the Eagle goalkeeper and in.
A few minutes later, Eagle Andrew Crist made a steal deep in Dirkbuilt territory, finding the far corner to make it 2-1. Dirkbuilt’s Aiden Allen then scored off a corner-kick before half to re-establish his team’s two-goal lead.
Ten minutes into the second half, Eagle’s Brandon Irish took a pass from teammate Camille Galloway, finding a corner to make it 3-2. Following a goal on a free-kick from Dirkbuilt’s Jono Runions to make it 4-2, Irish put a penalty shot off the post of the Dirkbuilt net, effectively sealing the win for Dirkbuilt.
“For this game, I would have to give (the MVP title) to Brandon Irish – he really worked hard,” said Eagle coach Eric Schroff. “He was up and down the field, all around. And he had a great penalty shot; he banged the post hard. The drama was palpable.”
Like Dirkbuilt, the Eagle squad won four straight matches to reach the final.
“We won the A division and they won the B division, so it was a perfect way to go through the round-robin and end up playing each other at the end,” said Schroff. “In the regular season the teams split the games – they won two, we won two – and it came down to the finals.”
In the match for third place, Henry Gulch Exploration took the bronze when Intersport failed to deliver a full team to the field, defaulting the match.
Contact Tom Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org