UNBC hits the road

The UNBC Timberwolves learned a valuable lesson last weekend on the men's soccer field in Victoria.

No lead is too safe in the Canada West Conference, especially against a team ranked in the top-10 in the CIS.

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Four goals in 16 minutes by the University of Victoria Vikes erased a 3-1 T-wolves' lead and they lost Sunday's game 5-3 to the eighth-ranked Vikes, having been shut out 3-0 in Saturday's game.

This weekend in Kelowna, the T-wolves (0-2-0) will try to earn their first wins of the season in a two-game set against the UBC-Okanagan Heat (0-2-0).

"We definitely learnt the importance of always being present in the game and focused on the now, not the result or the outcome," said second-year UNBC forward Francesco Bartolillo, in a team release. "The second we allowed our minds to wander, we were punished by a very strong UVIC side.

"It's a feeling that myself, and I think all the players, will not soon forget."

The T-wolves head into Kelowna knowing they can compete with at least one of the stronger teams in the conference.

"(The Vikes) are one of the very top teams in Canada West," said Bartolillo. "I think for us, seeing that we can do that against a top team like UVIC gives us confidence going into this weekend that we can not only compete, but if we play to our potential, can come out with some positive results."

The Steve Simonson-coached T-wolves are in their fourth season in the CIS. They're trying to improve on their 3-9-0 record in 2014.

The Heat lost its season-opener 2-0 to the Fraser Valley Cascades, then suffered a 1-0 loss to the Trinity Western University Spartans on Sunday.

The UNBC women (0-1-1) will be in Victoria to face the Vikes today at 5 p.m., then head to Vancouver to play the ninth-ranked UBC Thunderbirds Saturday at 7 p.m. The T-wolves started their season at home by tying UBC-Okanagan 1-1, then lost 3-0 to Thompson Rivers University.

UNBC finished 1-9-2 in 2014.

All games this season in the CIS will be streamed live on CanadaWest.TV.

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