Soccer nets wins, tie

The women’s soccer team remained undefeated last weekend.
The women’s soccer team remained undefeated last weekend.
Journal File Photo

The Golden Gaels men’s and women’s soccer teams continued their winning ways this past weekend, going unbeaten in games against the Trent Excalibur and the Ottawa Gee-Gees.

The women began their weekend on Friday with a 5-0 win over Trent at Richardson Stadium. This was the second meeting of the season between the two teams, and for the second time Trent was overmatched.

Queen’s enjoyed a spectacular first half, with a hat trick from Eilish McConville to stake the Gaels to a 3-0 halftime lead. Kaley Robinson was the star of the second half, scoring two goals off crosses to give Queen’s a commanding 5-0 lead that they didn’t relinquish.

Coach Dave McDowell said he was pleased with his team’s performance in the Trent game, as all of his players were able to see action against this less challenging competition. He did note, however, that the Excalibur were more organized defensively than he expected, a characteristic he said many of the weaker teams in the league have been demonstrating recently.

Before the team departed for their Thanksgiving weekend festivities, there was still one more game to be played: a Saturday afternoon affair in Ottawa against the Gee-Gees. Their previous meeting had resulted in a 0-0 draw, so the Gaels expected a tight game.

The Gaels took a 1-0 first-half lead with a goal by Laura Barker on a cross from McConville. They extended the lead early in the second half when another McConville cross found the back post, where Julia Wilkes stood unmarked to give Queen’s a 2-0 lead.

Queen’s did not look to be in any jeopardy of losing the lead until around the eightieth minute, when Ottawa potted their first of the game on an awkward shot that seemed to surprise goalie Kate Chambers.

Ottawa completed the comeback with just minutes remaining in the game on a controversial play. A Gee-Gees free kick was picked up by Chambers, who was then body checked by an oncoming Ottawa player. The ball popped loose right to the Gee-Gees and was immediately put home to square the game at 2-2.

“I had already turned around assuming that the referee was going to call the foul,” McDowell said. “I couldn’t believe it when the ball was in and no call was made.”

While he was happy with the single point, McDowell said he was somewhat disappointed knowing how close his team was to taking three points from a divisional rival.

He also said the field conditions in Ottawa were a novel situation for his team, who were not accustomed to playing on artificial FieldTurf.

“A pass that would normally be a great pass on grass can skip on the turf, making our possession game more difficult to manage,” he said.

The men’s soccer team had only one game this past weekend: a Friday encounter with Trent that resulted in a 4-1 win.

Despite cold, wet weather and a field that had been worn down by the earlier women’s game, the Gaels got off to a strong start. A goal by Brent Lukowski opened the scoring. The play started all the way back with goalie Tyler Swan and moved up the field efficiently.

Trent evened the score before halftime on a giveaway in the Gaels’ defensive third, but Chris Gencarelli soon took an Eddie Macedo through-ball and sent it into the corner of the net, making the halftime score 2-1.

Queen’s made up for a lackluster first half with a dominant second frame, getting goals from David Kerr-Vayne and Jared King to give the Gaels three points.

Coach Al McVicar said his team’s focus was terrific considering the upcoming layoff for Thanksgiving, and added he was especially happy with the second-half performance from all of his players.

“Our possession was much better in that second half,” McVicar said. “We were much better at switching the ball and were able to minimize the number of giveaways we committed.”

The men are in action tomorrow in an exhibition match against Ottawa, and then enjoy a home game on Sunday against division rival Carleton at 3 p.m. The women’s team also has a home game this Sunday against Carleton at 1 p.m.

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