The Surrey United Firefighters flexed some offensive muscle in posting their first win of the season, 4-2 on the road over Vancouver Metro Soccer League premier newcomers Estrella de Chile Saturday.
The defending provincial champions dropped their season opener 1-0 to West Van a week ago but with a trip to the national championships looming, United needed a strong showing Saturday in Vancouver.
"It may only be September but every win is important because we're trying to build confidence for the nationals (in October)," said Surrey coach Niall Thompson. "We lost our first game when we knew we shouldn't have. We had to get back to playing our game and the good thing about this week is we created a lot of scoring chances."
Surrey came out flat for the second consecutive week and almost paid the price for it. Chile had several quality scoring chances in the early going and only brilliant play by Firefighters' goalkeeper Paul Shepherd kept the game scoreless.
Surrey gained their composure and pushed back against the hosts. Angus Burke put Surrey firmly in control of the match when he netted a pair of goals five minutes apart on feeds from Andrew Proctor and Vinnie Stewart, respectively.
Surrey pushed their lead to 3-0 when Steve McAuley scored on a header early in the second half, a goal that was followed in short order by Proctor's first of the season off a cross from Burke.
The Firemen let down their guard in the final five minutes of the match and Chile capitalized with a penalty goal followed by a second goal in the final minute.
"Chile is a good team and as the season progresses they're going to get stronger and stronger," Thompson said. "They gave us some problems in the beginning but Paul Shepherd stood on his head with some quality saves to keep us in the game. They caught us off guard and Shepherd's saves were kind of a wake-up call for us. We settled down after that and played much better for the rest of the half."
Elsewhere, Rovers CCBTU picked up their first win in their new home at Newton Athletic Park with a 3-1 win over the Metro Ford Wolves.
Trailing 1-0 at the break, the Rovers battled back with three unanswered goals in the second half. Rizal Ganief got things going in the 55th minute when he tied the score off a well-placed cross from Dever Orgill. The same duo worked their magic on the second Rover's goal, this time with Orgill capitalizing on a pass from Ganief for what turned out to be the game winner.
Ganief then iced the game with a successful penalty kick in the 70th minute.
Newton's other premier league tenant, ICST Pegasus, also posted a win Saturday as they blanked host Norvan Pacific 2-0.
After a scoreless first half, the Horsemen opened the scoring shortly after the break when Chetan Jhooty beat two defenders before feeding a crossing pass to Goldy Takhar for an easy tap-in.
Pegasus controlled the play for much of the second half but was unable to pad their lead until the dying minutes of regulation when Diaz Kambere sealed the win on a free kick.
On Sunday afternoon the Delta United Hurricanes sustained their first loss of the season 3-1 to Columbus at John Oliver Park.
Columbus scored twice in the first half and one more after the break before Delta's Daniel Badesha scored on a penalty kick to break up the visitor's shutout bid.