Fernie Football Club (F.C.) took first in the JulyFest soccer tournament, last weekend. Submitted photo

Fernie F.C. undefeated in JulyFest tournament

Eighteen players represented Fernie in the JulyFest Soccer Tournament, which took place in Kimberley July 22-23. Over the course of two days, 60 teams played over 150 games on nine different fields. Fernie F.C. was mostly comprised of players from Fernie, although there were four from Calgary who also joined the team upon arrival.

In the first game Fernie F.C. started off strong, taking a 3-0 win against Edmonton.

In the next game they tied 1-1 against the Canmore Narwals. In this game, Fernie’s goalkeeper, Ryan Bradley, tore his achilles tendon and was forced to sit out for the rest of the tournament. Fernie also went on to lose their centre back, who was called out on work.

In the third game of the day, Fernie was up against Cranbrook’s Los Amigos. Despite dominating on many of the plays, Fernie drew a tie, 1-1.

The achilles injury was significant enough to set the team back a notch. Jose Esparza, who scored the equalizer against Cranbrook, stepped in as goalkeeper but was also forced to sit off due to a hip injury. Following this, Max Sombrowski, bravely took position in goal.

Max owned his new position, and performed a world class save to keep Fernie in the game. They then went on to win 2-0 against the Calgary Aliens. This served as an upset, as the Aliens have won this tournament for the past two years.

In the fourth game, Fernie won 3-0 against the Crusadors from North West Calgary. By the end of the game, there were 12 broken players. Most other teams still had full squads of 18-20 players to choose from.

This brought Fernie to the final game, where they took on the West Kootenay No Stars.

The No Stars scored first, but Fernie was awarded a penalty which gave them the oportunity to equalize. With eight minutes left in the game, Fernie scored the game-winning goal.

The 32 degree temperature did not help a weekend full of injuries, but in the end, Fernie rose up victorious.