Men’s soccer loses tight playoff game

Season ends with 1-0 defeat at the paws of the Ridgebacks

Head Coach Hoefler and his Gaels fought tooth-and-nail to advance to the quarter finals.

The men’s soccer team lost a heartbreaker last Wednesday to the Ontario Tech University Ridgebacks by a final score of 1-0.

The Gaels had snuck into the playoffs at the last second, guaranteeing their place in the first round in a wonderful game against Laurentian that saw them score three goals in the final 30 minutes of play.

Down 2-0 after the Voyageurs potted a pair of goals three minutes apart at the beginning of the second half, the Gaels answered in a big way with consecutive goals of their own courtesy of Kenji Chang and Zachary Toupin.

At the end of regulation, the Voyageurs were pushing on offence (a tie wouldn’t give them enough points to make the playoffs), and Queen’s counterattacked. Rookie Braeden Levac put an end to things, slotting home his first goal as a Gael at a very opportune time.

Goaltender Alex Jones made seven saves in the win.

Unfortunately, the magic didn’t last in the playoffs.

Ontario Tech beat the Gaels 4-0 in their regular season matchup at the beginning of October, so Head Coach Christian Hoefler and his men knew they were in for a challenge.

Queen’s started the game on the offensive, taking three shots and earning two corners before the Ridgebacks could muster a shot.

The Ridgebacks proceeded to get a couple shots off, and then Jean Paul Ajala-Alexis managed to knock one in past Jones. The Ridgebacks went into halftime nursing that 1-0 lead.

In a game that saw nearly equal opportunities in terms of shots and corners, the Gaels played the second half close, but were unable to capitalize. Ontario Tech’s goalie Nicholas Miller made five saves in his shutout effort. 

The Ridgebacks would go on to play the Carleton Ravens in the quarterfinals with a shot at the Final Four on the line, but the Ravens came out ahead 5-2. 

This is the third time in as many seasons that the Gaels have been ousted from the first round of the playoffs. The Gaels will look to get over the hump next year.

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