Home AB Cuglietta brace leads U Sports defending champion Alberta over UNBC

Cuglietta brace leads U Sports defending champion Alberta over UNBC

Jonah Smith
UNBC midfielder Jonah Smith fends off Alberta midfielder Bruno Zebie, right, on Sunday. (UNBC Timberwolves photo)
PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – The UNBC Timberwolves went chance for chance with the national champion Alberta Golden Bears for 60 minutes, but ended up falling 3-1 Sunday.
Coming off their first home loss of the season, the Timberwolves had a strong start Sunday afternoon against the University of Alberta.
It was UNBC that drew first blood In the 12th minute, as fifth-year Tofa Fakunle converted on a penalty kick, making it 1-0. The goal was the 11th of Fakunle’s UNBC career, making him the program’s all-time leading scorer.
The Golden Bears would tie things up in the 34th minute as Sebastian Crema beat UNBC keeper Ty Venhola with a shot to the bottom right corner.
In the second half, the Golden Bears turned up the speed of the game, and it was substitution Nikko Cuglietta who gave the visitors the lead in 64th minute.
He doubled his total 20 minutes later, when he chipped it by Venhola after finding himself in all alone.
“I think we had a lot of space on the wings, and we used our speed really well. I got some good chances, and it worked out today,” said Cuglietta following the game. “We’ve got some good midfielders in the middle who were able to strong some passes together and it worked out well.”
The match would end 3-1, but the TWolves had plenty to be proud of, matching the Golden Bears side for much of the 90 minutes.
“I think overall it was a good performance. We went out there and did as much as we could to defeat the national champions.,” said second-year Jonah Smith. “ They scored some good goals, but we also had some good chances and I think we could’ve taken advantage there.”
“As a team I think we’re happier because at the beginning of the year we weren’t playing that well but getting results,” he added.  “Now we’re playing well, so it’s just a matter of time before we get some wins.”
The UNBC TImberwolves will head out on the road next weekend as they take on MacEwan at 11 a.m. PT on Saturday, and Lethbridge at 1:15 PT on Sept. 24. The Golden Bears meanwhile will head home with games against Trinity Western and UBC on Saturday and Sept. 24.


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