Champs bring home the cup

They finally brought home the Jackson Cup ­— the first time since 1933.

“It was awesome bringing it back over the Malahat to Cowichan,” said Jesse Winter, captain of the Cowichan FC division 1 men’s soccer team.

The team played Juan de Fuca for the cup in the Vancouver Island Soccer League finals, Sunday, April 2, in Victoria, winning 2-0.

“We were there last year and lost in the finals,” explained Winter. “This year we were better prepared.”

He said the team had a winning mind-set.

“We have a really awesome team,” he said. “We work well together.”

Winter is one of three Ladysmith boys to represent the town on the team.

Matt Arnett and Ryan Andre also played.

Andre, named Jackson Cup MVP, is also the leading goal scorer and won the league’s golden boot.

Winter said the win wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of coach Glen Martin.

“He’s put in tons of time for us and it’s awesome to see that pay off for him,” Winter said.

Veteran players, like Kevin James and Tyler Hughes, have helped tremendously, Winter said.

“Definitely with them, we’re increasing our level to the next stage.”

Cowichan was fourth in the league with a record of 11 wins, five losses and one tie. Next, the team will be riding the victory all the way to provincials.