Soccer struggles in penultimate weekend

Men’s soccer couldn’t stop the Ravens this weekend.
Men’s soccer couldn’t stop the Ravens this weekend.
Lukasz Rygielski

With the playoffs on the horizon, Golden Gaels men’s and women’s soccer suffered this past Sunday against the visiting Carleton Ravens. The men’s side fell to Carleton 1-0, while the women settled for a 2-2 draw.

The men came into their game fresh off their first appearance on the CIS top 10 rankings of the season, ranked tenth in the nation. Carleton sat one place higher at ninth, and immediately looked to intimidate the Gaels with their physical play and size. The first meeting between the two teams this season had ended with Queen’s on the short end of a 2-0 result.

“We came into the game looking to play the ball on the ground,” said coach Al MacVicar. “Their style is difficult to play against, so we absolutely had to win the 50-50 balls in the air.”

Queen’s had Carleton under pressure at times in the first half, but it was the Ravens who drew first blood, netting a goal off an offensive throw-in. The Gaels responded, however, with Steve Irish and Chris Gencarelli generating chances to try to pull Queen’s even.

The wind was blowing directly against the Gaels in the second frame, but they still took the play to the Ravens for the better portion of the half. They were unable to tie up the score.

“We showed great heart and passion in that game fighting for that tying goal,” MacVicar said.

Defender Wade Ennis played notably well for the Gaels, shutting down Carleton striker and OUA goal-scoring leader Joshua Dewar-Morris. Dewar-Morris had scored both goals for Carleton in their previous meeting with the Gaels.

Meanwhile, the women needed a win against Carleton to keep their hopes of winning the OUA East division alive.

The Gaels got off to a strong start, taking a 2-0 lead over the Ravens before halftime on goals by Laura Barker and Renee MacLennan. Their combination passes and ability to get behind the defence were especially strong in the first half, creating plenty of opportunities to extend their two-goal lead.

For the second straight week, however, the team surrendered a two-goal lead and had to settle for the single point and no chance of winning their division.

“We just need to play a complete 90 minutes,” coach Dave McDowell said. “We played great in the first half, but just can’t have lapses like we have.” McDowell added he was especially pleased with the play of Julia Wilkes, who assisted on the goal by MacLennan.

Making the result even more painful for the Gaels was the loss of fourth-year midfielder Ashley Barrett, who went down with a broken leg late in the game.

Both the men’s and women’s teams end their regular seasons this weekend with home games against Waterloo on Saturday and Laurier on Sunday. The women play at 1 p.m. and the men at 3 p.m. Playoffs will likely begin for both teams on Wednesday, Oct. 26 at Richardson Stadium.

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