The final quarterfinal match at the 2023 U SPORTS Women’s Soccer Championship needed extra time to be settled, with the Trinity Western Spartans coming out on top over the host Queen’s Gaels 2-1 (AET) Thursday night in front of a large crowd at Richardson Stadium.
Olivia Kranjcec scored the winner for the Spartans on a penalty kick after a 110th-minute handball in the Queen’s 18-yard box.
After a scoreless first half that saw both teams with strong chances on the offensive end, the Gaels opened the scoring early in the second half. A beautiful cross by Vita Naihin was met with a header by Kendra Couto that found the back of the net and gave the Gaels the one-goal lead.
Trinity Western responded to the Gaels’ goal with steady pressure on offence and several close chances before a highlight-reel free kick from the far-left side of the pitch by Sophie Crowther found the back of the net to even the score in the 80th minute.
With the victory, the Spartans advanced to the Championship semifinals where they will take on the Laval Rouge et Or on Friday at 6:30 p.m. The Gaels, following the loss, will move on to the Consolation Semifinals and take on OUA rivals, the Western Mustangs, Friday at 1:30 p.m.
Nike Team Players of the Game
- Queen’s: Kendra Couto
- Trinity Western: Bryana Buttar