Two Prince George minor soccer teams will be hoping this weekend to nail down homefield advantage for the provincial championships next month.
Both the U13 girls and U15 boys will be playing teams from Kamloops in two-game series Saturday and Sunday in Prince George. The winner in each series will move on to represent the Interior at the provincials.
This year, the 13, 15 and 17 A Provincial Championships for girls and boys will be played at the Rotary Soccer Fields from July 3 to 6. There will be 20 teams here for the championships, the first time Prince George has hosted the event.
The 13A girls will play Kamloops at 4 p.m. on June 14 and 9:30 a.m. on June 15, with the 15A boys playing Kamloops at 6 p.m. on June 14 and 11:30 a.m. on June 15.
Several other Prince George teams had their provincial qualifying tournaments last weekend. The 12A boys won all of three of their playdown games and will be off to Richmond, where they will be joined by the 15B boys, who won two games in Dawson Creek by 3-0 and 2-1 scores to qualify.
The 13B girls punched their tickets for the provincials in Nelson by downing Williams Lake 2-0, Dawson Creek 4-0 and 100 Mile House 5-1 at their playdowns.
The 16A girls made it look easy at their playdowns for provincials, whitewashing Williams Lake 11-0 and Quesnel 6-0.
The 16B girls, 18A boys and 18A girls have also qualified for their provincials. All the provincials will be held at the same time, from July 3 to 6.
Many of the Prince George rep teams headed to a huge set of tournaments in Edmonton on the May 31 and June 1 weekend, running into a lot of good competition.
The 12A boys team split their four games to finish third, finding themselves playing a lot of older teams.
The 15B girls team played in the 16 Tier 3 division. They tied Edmonton 3-3, tied Calgary 1-1 and lost to Grande Prairie 1-0 in the roundrobin portion. They then played Calgary again, and beat them 2-1 to claim the bronze medals.
The 12 development girls team got a bit of a shock when they showed up for the tournament. They went there thinking the games would be eight-on-eight, but found out they were 11-on-11. Since the Prince George team only had 11 players to start with, it made for a very thin bench. The girls didn’t let that stop them though, battling through to the final where they dropped a 1-0 decision to finish second.
The 13A girls played in the 14 Tier 1 division, where they won two, lost one and tied one, finishing third of six teams.
The 13B girls got off to a good start, downing Calgary Blizzard Blaze 4-1 in their opener. After that, they ran into the same problem of finishing around the net which has plagued them all season. They lost 1-0 to the Lewis Pirates and 2-0 to Calgary NSDSC Nitro.
The 13B boys played in the 14 Tier 3 division. They started off by beating Lloydminster 2-1, then lost 5-2 to Edmonton, 2-0 to Fort St. John and 2-0 to Edmonton again.
The 15A boys lost 3-0 to Edmonton West in their opener, but bounced back to down Fort McMurray 1-0. They lost by that same score to Grande Prairie, and finished with a 2-1 win over Edmonton Strikers.
The 18A girls got off to a slow start in their division, falling 6-0 to Saskatoon in their opener. They then lost 5-1 and 2-1 to a pair of Edmonton teams, but came back to win their final game 3-2 over another Edmonton team.
The 18A boys started with a 2-1 win over Fort McMurray and kept the momentum going with a 3-0 win over Inter. They played to a scoreless draw with Armstrong, then fell 4-0 to Fort McMurray in their last game.