Women's soccer cool down under heat

Women’s soccer remains winless on the year after a pair of draws

Micah Vermeer (#18) looks up-field against the Ryerson Rams

The women’s soccer team settled for a pair of draws this past weekend due to an inability to finish in front of goal.

The Gaels (0-1-3) only got one goal past the keeper in their two games against U of T’s Varsity Blues and the Ryerson Rams. 

In their first action, the Gaels faced the undefeated Varsity Blues (2-0-1). Falling behind 1-0 early, the team clawed back and scored in the 33rd minute with a goal from forward Sarah Nixon from the 18-yard box — the first goal of her CIS career.

While the Gaels controlled the flow of the game for most of the second half, they were unable to score. A clean sheet in the second half was largely due to four key saves by Queen’s goalie Madison Tyrell.

In a hope to get their first win of the season, and to combat the heat, Coach Dave McDowell changed the lineup against the Ryerson Rams (1-1-1).

“Our players are pretty fit, but doing two games when it feels like 40 degrees out on only 24 hours rest is pretty tough,” McDowell said. “I thought that by resting a few players on the Sunday and mixing in some different combinations that would help it, but maybe it wasn’t the right combination that we were searching for.”

Despite getting six shots off on target, the Gaels were unable to score, resulting in a 0-0 draw. Goalkeeper Michalia Frawley stopped all four shots that came her way, playing her role in keeping the shutout.

While the Gaels dominated most of the match, Coach McDowell believes that the Rams’ physical defensive play was enough to hold the team scoreless.

“Give Ryerson credit, they were very well-organized; defensively they did a very good job,” McDowell said. “They were physical, and it almost took us a half to figure something out in terms of playing against them.” 

“We didn’t generate any real quality chances, certainly we did not test the keeper nearly as much as we needed to have.”

For the time being, the weekend action has left the Gaels eighth in the OUA East.

But despite not registering a win yet this season, McDowell has high praise for his team.

“In each of our games… by far we have had the better chances,” he said. 

“First weekend we were let down by some individual defending mistakes, and this weekend we were let down by finishing.”

“A real positive about the start we have made is that we only need to tweak a few little things, and I think we will be good.”

While he gave his team praise, McDowell was also quick to point out how strong the OUA East is this year. 

“A big thing is with the league this year is there isn’t any easy games... which is fantastic,”he said. McDowell also stressed the importance of his goalkeepers, Michaila Frawley and Madison Tyrell.

“I think goalkeepers are going to be a very big part of our success throughout the year,” he said, “not necessarily only in terms of shot stopping, but in terms of organization and the little things that make goalies so dependable”. 

The Gaels are in action next on Saturday at RMC, who are ninth in the OUA East standings.

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