The U Sports Canada West women's soccer season is only into its third week but curtain calls are imminent for four UNBC Timberwolves seniors facing the reality that this will be their last weekend to play a game on home turf.
The T-wolves (2-2-0) host the Trinity Western Spartans (2-2-0) tonight at 6 at North Cariboo Fields, then will prepare for a Sunday afternoon game against the Fraser Valley Cascades.
Three of the four fifth-year Timberwolves - defender Fiona Raymond, and midfielders Tianna Pius and Tianna Rossi - are from Prince George and have played most of their soccer careers right next door at Rotary Fields. The other UNBC senior, defender Rhianne Ferdinandi, is from New Westminster.
Beyond Sunday, UNBC's remaining eight games are all on the road.
"This is my last home weekend as a Timberwolf, so I would love to have a weekend that produces results," Raymond told UNBC sports information officer Rich Abney. "But results don't mean everything. So (I'm) focusing on having a good weekend, playing well as a team, and putting on a show for our fans."
After going through the entire 2016 season without a win the T-wolves scored victories in their first two games on opening weekend, 3-0 over Thompson Rivers and 2-0 over the UBC Okanagan Heat. They fell back to earth last weekend with consecutive losses to Mount Royal (2-0) and Alberta (4-0).
"We have taken huge steps the past year, which I think is apparent in the games we have played," said Raymond. "But I don't think we are content, and we are all looking to improve as the season goes on."
Trinity Western went undefeated at 11-0-3 as Canada West regular-season champion last year but lost 3-0 to UBC in the Canada West playoff final. The Spartans are 21-1-6 over the past two seasons.
"Trinity is a strong program," said Raymond. "As strong as they are, we have grown as a team. Instead of focusing on our opponents, we will be focusing on us, and how we can play our game to influence them."
Rossi leads the T-wolves with two goals in four games, while Pius is among three UNBC players with a team-leading two assists. Pius has played more Canada West games (51) than any other UNBC women's soccer player, ranks first in career assist with five and is third on the points list with six. Jenaya Robertson currently leads the Spartans with two goals this season.
Fraser Valley (1-2-1) plays today in Edmonton against Grant MacEwan.
The UNBC men (2-3-3) are in Alberta this weekend for games at MacEwan on Saturday and Lethbridge on Sunday. The Twolves are coming off consecutive losses to Victoria (2-1), Mount Royal (1-0) and Alberta (3-1).