The Mariners’ men’s soccer team fell short in its quest for a nation- al championship, falling in the national final 5-4 to the host Sher-idan Bruins in a penalty shootout on November 8 in Oakville, Ontario.
The game was a back and forth affair, with both teams leading at some point in the match. Victor Blasco opened the scoring for the Mariners just seven minutes into the match. The Bruins evened the score at 32 minutes with a goal by Chris Di Vizio-Mendez. The Mariners took the lead back at 41 minutes, but the Bruins replied with a goal of their own just a minute later, tying the game at two heading into halftime.
After Sheridan took a 3-2 lead at 72 minutes, the Mariners refused to die, tying the score 3-3 on a penalty kick in the fourth minute of stop- page time and sending the championship game into extra time.
The Bruins scored in the first minute of extra time, forcing the Mariners to try and mount another comeback. Just when it looked like
the Bruins were going to be national champions, the Mariners scored a goal in the final minute of extra time, tying the game at 4-4, sending the match to penalty kicks.
After both teams scored on their first five attempts, the Mariners missed their sixth attempt, giving Di Vizio-Mendez a chance to win it for the Bruins. He made no mistake, giving the Bruins a 5-4 victory and the national championship.
The loss marks a disappointing end to a very strong season for the Mariners, who captured a silver medal at the PacWest championship as well as the silver medal at the national tournament. The Mariners also finished the regular season as the best team in the PacWest, compiling a 10-3-2 record in 15 regular sea- son games.
The Mariners advanced to the national final after a 3-2 shootout victory over Algonquin Thunder in the semi-finals. VIU opened the tournament with a 1-0 victory over Holland University.