Four-point weekend

Women draw with UOIT, best Trent

The Gaels’ five conceded goals are the lowest among all teams in the OUA East.
The Gaels’ five conceded goals are the lowest among all teams in the OUA East.
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Midfielder Jessie de Boer racked up three goals over the weekend, including a pair against Trent.
Midfielder Jessie de Boer racked up three goals over the weekend, including a pair against Trent.
Photo: 

A hard-fought draw on the road and an easy home win netted women’s soccer four points over the weekend.

The Gaels (5-2-2) only came away with a single point against the UOIT Ridgebacks on Saturday in Oshawa, drawing 1-1. The next day, they topped the Trent Excalibur 4-0.

The match with UOIT (7-0-2) was the second between the teams this year, as the Ridgebacks beat the Gaels 1-0 on Sept. 14. This time around, Queen’s couldn’t avenge the loss.

Midfielder Jessie de Boer opened the scoring against the Ridgebacks in the 19th minute. The lead wouldn’t last for long, as UOIT tied it up five minutes later.

“We went up and then gave away a goal that maybe we shouldn’t have,” head coach Dave McDowell said. “But you always say that about goals.”

Defence was the story for the remainder of the game, as neither team could find the game-winner.

McDowell said he’d like to see his team capitalize on offensive opportunities with more consistency.

“In the end, [we] created enough chances to win, but didn’t punish them,” he said.

The Gaels got off to another quick start in Sunday’s match against Trent (2-6-1), as de Boer tallied two early scores.

Despite being up 2-0 before the 10th minute, McDowell wasn’t overly pleased with their showing.

“It was alright,” he said. “We’ll take the result, but I don’t think it was the most gorgeous game of soccer in the world.

According to McDowell, the Gaels didn’t open the match with passion.

“I thought, mentally, we didn’t start very well, it took us too long to get into it,” he said.

The Gaels did eventually regroup. Rookie defender Matija Skoko buried a goal in the 20th minute after a pinpoint centering pass, giving them a 3-0 lead.

Queen’s upped the pressure from this point on, maintaining it for the remainder of the half.

The Gaels had several chances after the third goal, but couldn’t convert them, including a shot from striker Breanna Burton at the end of the half that sailed just wide.

The first chance for either team in the second half came in the 55th minute, when striker Tara Bartram’s header put Burton in the offensive zone. In the ensuing play, midfielder Cara Ott received a pass just outside the box, but booted it wide on the near side.

Trent had an opportunity of their own 10 minutes later. Gaels goalkeeper Michaila Frawley, who replaced Madison Tyrell at halftime, deflected the initial shot before a defender came back and kicked a precariously rolling ball out towards centre.

In the final minutes of regular time, Gaels defender Savannah Meyer-Clement raced down the centre of the pitch in pursuit of a long pass. When the Trent keeper hesitated about whether to play the ball outside of the box, Meyer-Clement bowled through her on the way to a goal, giving the Gaels the 4-0 victory.

What might punish the team in the next few weeks is their schedule. After playing twice on the weekend, the Gaels now look ahead to the Carleton Ravens (5-2-2) on Wednesday, the Laurentian Voyageurs (3-5-2) on Saturday and the Nipissing Lakers (2-7-1) on Sunday.

Five games in nine days is a challenge for any team, especially considering that four will be played on the road.

Maintaining a healthy, well-rested lineup is this week’s focus for McDowell and company.

“Surviving it is the most important thing,” he said. “Just trying to keep players so their energy systems are okay.”

His expectations for the Carleton game are simple: “Hopefully getting three points to move up the standings.”

OUA East Standings

1. Ottawa (9-1-0) – 27 pts

2. UOIT (7-0-2) – 23 pts

T-3. Queen’s (5-2-2) – 17 pts

T-3. Carleton (5-2-2) – 17 pts

5. Toronto (5-2-1) – 16 pts

6. Laurentian (3-5-2) – 11 pts

7. Trent (2-6-1) – 7 pts

8. Nipissing (2-7-1) – 7 pts

9. Ryerson (2-6-0) – 6 pts

10. RMC (0-9-1) – 1 pts

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