Can you believe it? It feels like it’s only just got started, but we’re officially a quarter of the way through the 2023 CPL season.

Week 7 was quiet on the goalscoring front, but it nonetheless provided several notable talking points.

Match of the Week: Atlético Ottawa 0-1 Forge FC

A whopping eight shots on target were not enough for Atlético Ottawa on a day that Triston Henry simply would not be beaten.

It was all Ottawa for large portions of the match, but the home side could not find the back of the net, try as they might with Henry infallible in goal, rebuffing everything that was thrown at him.

Instead, Forge took advantage of the occasion and found a goal against the run of play in second-half stoppage time. Because of course. We’ve seen this movie before. Even when underperforming, Forge always seem to pull something out of their magic hat. This time, it was winger David Choinière who got the winner, pouncing on the ball after a sloppy bit of goalkeeping from Ottawa’s Sean Melvin.

And can we please talk about how good Choinière continues to be for the Hamilton side? It feels like he somehow falls under the radar even though he should be considered as one of the league’s top attacking players after his breakout 2022 campaign.

Between him and his brother Mathieu for Montréal, it’s a hell of a year for the Choinière family so far.

Player of the Week: Triston Henry

With all of that said above, it’s only right that Henry is given the distinction this week.

Henry was called on again and again in the second half and he was always up for the task. Back-to-back chances for Gianni dos Santos and then Zaharia Bahous in the 53rd minute were among Henry’s highlights on the afternoon.

Ollie Bassett probably thought he had the shot-stopper beat with his crushing free kick in the 59th minute, but Henry leaped right to push the ball out for a corner. Later, Henry denied Dos Santos on the break, rushing out to get a left leg on his shot attempt.

In the 65th, a first-time effort from Miguel Acosta was no match for Hamilton’s hero in goal, and even after Choinière’s late opener, Henry had to make one more save, stopping Carl Howarth from point-blank range after a corner kick found the Ottawa defender.

Goal of the Week: Adonijah Reid

My job of picking out a goal of the week was made pretty easy considering there were only four tallies across the four games.

Adonijah Reid’s first-half opener for Pacific in a 1-1 draw with the Halifax Wanderers gets the nod this time.

Reid’s first goal in the CPL was a nice one, with the youngster skipping past a couple of Halifax defenders before squeaking the ball past Yann Fillion in goal. Halifax’s netminder will probably want that one back, but take nothing away from Reid’s approach on the play and his burst of speed. The Bramptonian has been such a fun player to watch in 2023, so let’s hope this goal can fire him up even more in the coming weeks.

It was a bit surprising to see Reid earn the start over Djenairo Daniels and Easton Ongaro up top for James Merriman’s team, but in the end, it was a great choice.

Stoppage time

York are on the up!

After dominating away to Halifax last week, the Nine Stripes returned home to shutout Cavalry in a 1-0 victory, with Clément Bayiha’s first-half goal the difference between the two sides.

Still without a goal this season, it’s nice to see Osaze De Rosario getting involved more, as the 21-year-old did well to assist Bayiha’s winning strike.

Now up to third in the table, York will look to prove that their uptick in form is no fluke. They can do just that by getting a result away to Forge next weekend.

A stalemate between Vancouver FC and Valour wrapped up this weekend’s action, with the visiting Winnipeg side failing to make good use of their 17 shots in the contest. Valour are without a win since Week 1, while Vancouver continue to be a tough nut to crack in their first season of existence.

Manager Afshin Ghotbi has not been afraid to mess around with his lineup this season. Vancouver’s gaffer utilized attacker Mamadou Kane as a defender against Atlético Ottawa, and this week curiously slotted defender Ibrahim Bakaré in the attack. Wild stuff. 16-year-old TJ Tahid also earned his first professional start in the goalless draw.

The Eagles are out for vengeance next weekend as they host their provincial rivals Pacific for the first time, after falling to the Tridents at Starlight Stadium during the season-opening weekend.