Brent Mutis, Sport Information & Compliance Officer
LILLOOET PARK - Despite missing five regular players and dropping a 3-0 decision to visiting Vancouver Island University (VIU), Capilano Blues head coach Alex Elliott says the news is not all bad for his side with the PACWEST postseason approaching.
The Blues already know they'll be facing Douglas College in the first game of the playoffs Oct. 25. Douglas defeated Langara College Saturday by a 5-3 score meaning the order of finish is finalized with VIU in first, Douglas second, Capilano third and Langara fourth.
VIU will have a bye directly into the PACWEST final while Capilano will face Douglas with a berth into the championship game on the line.
On Saturday at home, the Blues fell behind 2-0 after 45 minutes and conceded another early in the second half. They were without fullbacks Eric Swanson and Andrew Shoring and midfielders Bryce Millway and Tyreese Meas as each was serving a one-game suspension for accumulated yellow cards. Capilano continued to be without striker Jeremy Monn-Djasngar who is recovering from an injury.
Fielding a lineup that featured a number of younger players, Elliott took a philosophical view and looked for the silver lining.
"Going into this game we were locked in with Douglas in a semifinal for next week so we have to be a little bit cautious with some of the injuries, we have to be a little bit cautious with some of the (yellow) cards so the positive there is getting young bodies some minutes and getting comfortable and starting to learn the ropes of PACWEST so getting young guys in is really the positive there," said the second-year head coach.
There is just one more regular-season game to play, Sunday's 2:30 p.m. kickoff at Langara College and the suspended players will be available once again. With the finish in the PACWEST standings already written in stone, Elliott knows he can spread the playing time around and keep everyone as fresh as possible with the most meaningful games of the campaign waiting next weekend.
"The positive of the last three weeks is that every single player on our 22-man roster has played and played quite a few minutes so there is positives there that will support us in the future."
Elliott's knows the week's training is crucial and he hopes to get some good news on the injury front.
"I think for us, we need to make sure that we are healthy before we really match ourselves up," said Elliott. "For us, it’s been about three weeks where we’ve just got to be patient, stay positive and we’ll get there and that’s kind of what we’re looking to do by midweek this week."