Calgary Foothills FC earned three important away points with a 3-1 win against Seattle Sounders FC U23 in Washington State Wednesday.
The victory keeps Foothills FC atop the Premier Development League Northwest Division ahead of TSS FC Rovers as the season enters its second half.
“A fantastic professional performance from the lads once again,” said Tommy Wheeldon Jr., Calgary Foothills FC head coach. “Especially as we start our road trip against tough opposition in Seattle Sounders. A nice early goal got us into the mood.
“I thought tactically we were very good. Offensively we were very, very strong. And once again led by our captain Dominick Zator, Dean Northover, Joel Waterman and Jordan Haynes.”
Foothills FC got off to the perfect start with a goal in the 5th minute by striker Ajeej Sarkaria on a corner kick. The Calgary club continued to apply pressure on the hosts and had the majority of the ball in the first half, but were unable to add to their lead before the break.
But Sergio Camargo added a second goal for the visitors on a clean strike from the edge of the box in the 62th minute, after some fine work on the right wing by Nico Pasquotti.
Scott Menzies pulled a goal back for Sounders U23 in the 82nd minute. But Sarkaria sealed the points for the visitors with his second goal of the game in the 92nd minute, again benefiting from some excellent work by Pasquotti.
Wheeldon praised two-goal man Sarkaria on his first appearance since returning from injury.
“I’m delighted for Ajeej Sarkaria,” said Wheeldon. “He’s had a long term out. Good to have him back in the side. He just gives us something totally different. He brings others into play very well. Very selfless.”
Sarkaria admitted that it has been difficult being stuck on the sidelines the last couple months with an ankle injury, but said he’s happy to be back playing.
“It’s been two and half long months,” Sarkaria said. “But it feels good to get back on the field with the guys. And back scoring goals. Nothing beats that for a striker.
“It was a good game,” continued Sarkaria. “We started off really strong. We got an early goal. I think we had a professional performance. We controlled the game. We made one mistake. And then we got our heads back together. And scored the final clinching goal.”
Wheeldon also applauded another excellent performance from Nico Pasquoti.
“Just absolutely outstanding,” said Wheeldon. “In the 92nd minute, to go on the mazy run he did, to cut back for Ajeej, just shows the type of season he’s had. He’s an absolute danger.”
Wheeldon and his squad will now continue their road trip against TSS FC Rovers Friday.
“We’re delighted,” he said. “We’ll recover. And we’ll prepare for Vancouver trip when we play TSS again.”
Foothills FC’s play their next two games on the road against TSS FC Rovers (June 15) and Victoria Highlanders (June 17). Their next home game is against TSS FC Rovers in Okotoks Saturday, June 23 at 2pm.
Single game and season tickets are available online at www.foothillsfc.ca/tickets/ or at the gate.