KELOWNA, BC – The UBC Okanagan Heat Women's Soccer team won their second straight game with a 90th minute goal from Kylee Walker as they knocked off the MacEwan Griffins 1-0 Saturday morning at Nonis Field.
Walker's second of the season broke a scoreless deadlock just before stoppage time. Her efforts were rewarded as the Heat had just finished pressuring the MacEwan deffense multiple times but were unable to get a strong attack away until Walker's goal.
Walker has scored two straight game winners for UBC Okanagan for her only two markers on the season.
Not much happened in the opening half as each team tried to push the offensive opportunities without much success. The most dangerous player in the opening 45 minutes was MacEwan's Meghan Oram, having the best opportunity that was chipped just wide over Heat keeper Francesca Balletta after catching the Heat defensive napping on a dropkick from Griffins keeper Emily Burns.
The Griffins looked like the stronger team to begin the second half as Raeghan McCarthy created multiple chances, including a shot from outside the box that went through Balletta's hands and wide for a corner.
Kylee Walker was subbed out at halftime but was re-entered in the 77th minute as the Heat tried to create an offensive push. The tactic worked, as Brittany Wheeler, Susan Traynor, Cassie Bratten, Kacee Ougden and Walker had multiple runs that generated scoring chances, as Ally Ferronato tried crosses into the box for headers as well.
As the Heat attacked at the end of the half, Wheeler crossed the ball in for Walker, who deftly chipped it over the shoulder of charging Griffins Keeper Emily Burns, finding the left corner and sending the home fans into a frenzy.
Francesca Balletta picked up her second consecutive clean sheet and her second victory of the season, as she made five saves to bring her season total to 57 stops, which is good for sixth in Canada West.
Emily Burns was less busy, seeing only three shots on target, stopping two, as her record falls to 7-5-1.
The UBCO Heat (2-9-2) wrap up their home schedule with a 1 p.m. kickoff against the UNBC Timberwolves at Nonis Field on Sunday afternoon. The fifth year and graduating player ceremony will take place just prior to the opening whistle.
The Griffins (7-5-1) will travel to Kamloops to take on the WolfPack, with TRU playing for their playoff lives.
~ Kyle Anderson, Heat athletics