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Phoenix soar over Cobras in RVSS soccer finals

The 2024 Rocky View Schools Sports Association (RVSS) soccer season came to an end last night at Airdrie’s Monklands Field.

The 2024 Rocky View Schools Sports Association (RVSS) soccer season came to an end last night at Airdrie’s Monklands Field. Against near gale force winds, four of the league's top teams battled for a championship and bronze medal finish.  

The Springbank Phoenix, who went 5-1 and finished atop the standings among a three-way tie for first, beat the Cochrane Cobras 2-1 to claim the league championship. Meanwhile, the Bert Church Chargers, who alongside Springbank and Cochrane finished with a 5-1 record, closed out a defensive masterclass against their crosstown rival Croxford Cavaliers for a 1-0 win. 

The ending of the 2024 season is a rather fitting one. In the seven team league, three teams finished tied for first place, and each of the three ended the year with a podium finish. 

Three other teams finished the season in another three-way tie for second, with the W.H. Croxford Cavaliers distancing themselves from the George McDougall Mustangs and Cochrane’s Bow Valley Bobcats with a single playoff win that put them in contention for the league championship.

The Phoenix lost their first game of the 2024 campaign against the Chargers, but then rattled off seven wins in a row to end the season as the league's top team. 

A first-round playoff bye for Springbank setup a second-round matchup with Croxford– a game that ended in an extra time 4-3 victory for the Phoenix. 

Phoenix win league championship over Cochrane

The Cobras, who finished in the league’s third spot after a tie-breaker put the Chargers ahead of them, had a significantly more difficult playoff path. A close first-round 2-1 victory over George McDougall pitted the Cobras against Bert Church–a game that ended in dramatic fashion, with Cochrane winning 3-2 in penalty kicks. 

Cochrane’s only loss of the 2024 season came on May 15 against the Phoenix. A Wednesday night home game for the Cobras ended 3-1 for the Springbank visitors, but the only blemish on an otherwise remarkable season did not slow Cochrane down. In six regular season games, the Cobras scored 21 goals, second only to the Phoenix who scored 23.

The championship game began with a roar of the crowd when the Phoenix scored the first goal of the match off a smooth pass play from in front of the Cochrane goal. Another Springbank goal minutes later put the Cobras down two going into halftime. 

The Cobras struck back right after half with a mid-range shot that arched over the Phoenix goalkeeper to cut the lead in half. Neither team was able to find the back of the goal for the last 30 minutes of the game, giving the Phoenix a 2-1 championship victory and sending them off to Zones. 

Chargers shut down rival Cavaliers, win bronze medal game 1-0

A wicked wind contributed to another chapter of an Airdrie high school rivalry. Just moments into the bronze medal game between the Bert Church Chargers and the Croxford Cavaliers, a long range kick from a Charger player– a kick that should have sent the ball soaring wide left of the Croxford goal and out of place–was blown helplessly into the Cavaliers net for the first score of the game.

The first goal was all the austere Chargers needed. Strong defensive play has been the Chargers modus operandi all season long. No team, except for the Phoenix, allowed fewer goals than Bert Church in 2024– eight in six regular season games.

If not for the loss in penalty kicks to Cochrane last Thursday, the Chargers would have found themselves playing for gold. Indeed, it appeared Cochrane had the Chargers number all season. Bert Church’s only loss in the regular season came at the hands of the Cobras. 

Close finish to 2024 soccer season

With the win, the Phoenix will be the Rocky View representative at the upcoming South Central Zones tournament. Although surely not the end the Cobras or the Chargers were envisioning for their 2024 seasons, the podium finish ended up being not entirely surprising.

 


Riley Stovka

About the Author: Riley Stovka

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