United hosts biggest game yet

Nanaimo United dives into Jackson Cup play this weekend, and appears ready.

Both the Div. 1 and Div. 2 men’s soccer teams are coming off lopsided blowout victories last weekend. The Div. 1 men’s team defeated Juan de Fuca 7-0 in Victoria on Saturday, dominating from start to finish. James Merriman had a huge game, scoring three goals and setting up two others. Romaie Martin had two goals and Jared Stephens and Davis Stupich also scored.

The Div. 2 men, meanwhile, defeated FC Sagres at Merle Logan Field by a 5-0 score that same night.

Now the men’s soccer club moves to the Vancouver Island Soccer League playoffs, as the United Div. 1 men (6-7-3) host Gordon Head (12-2-2) at 7 p.m. Saturday at Merle Logan Field. The teams tied 3-3 earlier this year, so United manager Frank Klemencic said he’s expecting an “incredible” match in cup play this weekend. He’s asking for fan support both for the home game and the Div. 2 side’s playoff game against Cowichan FC at Cowichan Sportsplex in Duncan at 2:15 p.m. earlier that day.

“If there is only one day this year you’re going to come out and watch, this is it,” Klemencic said. “Probably the best assembly of high-end talent amongst the two squads that this town has seen in many years. Both have legitimate chances to take the Jackson Cup.”

SOCCER TALK … United’s premier women’s side has made it to the semifinals of Terry Price Cup play. The team faces Prospect Lake in Victoria on Sunday.