Although many of us must now kiss the summer months goodbye and drag ourselves back to campus, both the Men and Women’s soccer teams have already been working day and night at Alumni Field in preparation for the season to come.
Last Saturday, both teams welcomed the Waterloo Warriors to Alumni Field for Brock’s home opener. As both the men and women’s teams played as hard as they could, both teams saw two very different results.
Coming back from a tie and a loss prior to Brock Men’s home opener, the Badgers were unable to walk away with the win as they were defeated by the Warriors by a score of 2-1 and the Laurier Golden Hawks by a score of 3-1, thus placing the Badgers eighth in the OUA West Division.
In the past, when the two teams have faced head-to-head, it has always been a very close and high intensity game; Saturday’s game was no different. Both teams played with high pressure that resulted in some very physical play as a number of hard tackles were landed, causing a very heated environment for all coaches and players.
The game started off as if it was going to go in the Badgers’ favor, as they were able to open the scoring within the 22 minute of the game. Sophomore Arsen Platis took a cross pass from Marco Paoletti and fired the ball past Thomas Modesch, the Waterloo goalkeeper.
Midway through the opening half, Brock was dominating in the offense as they were able to land two powerful shots on net, yet Modesch was able to save both, whipping away the Badgers chances of being able to
increase their lead.
Shortly after the Warriors were able to pick up the tempo as Yusup Khaled gave a lead pass to Jae Jin Lee in which he was able to walk alone, untouched as he scored on Brock goalkeeper Matt Zaikos, thus tying the game within the forty-fourth minute.
Near the end of the game, Jin Lee was able to come on top for his team as he was able to score his second goal of the game within the seventy-eighth minute, thus giving the Warriors’ the game winner with a score of 2-1.
The final concluded with Brock’s Zaikos collect three out of five saves for the loss, while the Warriors Modesch saved four of the five shots on net. There were a total of six yellow cards handed out through the game, both the Badgers and the Warriors were given three each.
The following day, the Badgers headed to Kitchener in hopes to walk away with a win as they took on the Waterloo Warriors neighbours, the Laurier Golden Hawks.
The first half started off in Laurier’s favor as the men were able to open the half with a 2-0 lead with goals for Niklas Bauer and Nikola Miokovic.
The Badgers struggled to get a goal throughout the game, then salt was poured into the Badger wound as Laurier would collect a third goal within the eighty-first minute, giving the Golden Hawks a lead of 3-0.
Despite the gap, the Badgers would not walk away scoreless as Badger Nathan Briglio would score the lone goal with four minutes remaining in regulation, giving Briglio his first goal of the season.
In goal, Brock starter Matt Zaikos registered six saves in the loss. The Golden Hawks goalkeeper Rocco Strazzella turned aside three of the four shots he faced for the win.
Despite the two losses, the season is still early and there is still a lot of potential within the men’s team. With adjustments being made with first year players and a new coaching staff, it will be a learning process for the Badgers but the hopes of their season taking off may happen within the next few games to come.
On the flip side, the women’s soccer team played the same teams as the men’s soccer team did, but with a little more success. Prior to the women’s Home Opener, the Badgers prepared themselves for their following games as they recovered from two losses. Last weekend the Badgers came out on top as they defeated the Waterloo Warriors with a score of 2-1, while losing to the Golden Hawks by a score of 6-0. The women’s team is currently sitting sixth in the OUA West Division.
With no significant action occurring during the opening half of the game, it wasn’t until the second half that the Badgers were the first to be able to put one on the board. Guelph native Alysha Bonany gave Laura Kirk a lead pass in which Kirk was able to use her speed to her advantage, beating a Waterloo defender and scoring one past the Warrior’s goalkeeper Finn Dunn, giving Kirk her first goal of the season.
Although the lead was short lived as Waterloo player Kendra Wynter was able to find the back of the net and tied the game 1-1 only just two minutes after the Badgers goal, also giving Wynter her first goal of the season.
But the tying goal only put a larger fire in the hearts of the Badgers players. Within the eighty-third minute of the game, Brock was able to regain the lead as Brooke Boekestyn crossed a pass into the box, hitting Celine DaCosta in which she was able to bury one past Dunn giving the Badgers a 2-1 lead.
DaCosta’s goal ended up being the game winner for the Badgers.
In goal, Brock goalkeeper and rookie Marilena Spagnolo made eight saves for her first career OUA victory, while Waterloo’s Dunn added six saves in the loss.
The following day the two teams traveled together as they headed to Kitchener to take on the Laurier Golden Hawks, in which the Badgers were unable to get the same result they received the previous day against the Waterloo Warriors.
By the first half of the game, the Badgers were off to a slow start as they were being outscored by a score of 4-0 within the first half against the Golden Hawks. Two out of the four goals were penalty kicks given to the Golden Hawks in which Katie Bishop was able to capitalize on both attempts.
Following the 4-0 deficit, the Golden Hawks didn’t stop there as they were able to score two more goals, thus decreasing the chances of the Badgers being able to come up with a win.
Goals from the Laurier side were players Jacky Normandeau, Mackenzie D’Andrade, Tierney Dunham and Maxine Murchie.
In goal, Brock rookie Marilena Spagnolo suffered the loss allowing five goals on 10 shots. In the fifty-ninth minute of the second half, Spagnolo was replaced by Lauren MacCulloch who collected four saves.
The Badgers will be on the road against the Guelph Gryphons on September 11 before returning home on Homecoming Weekend when they host the Algoma Thunderbirds September 17 and 18. On the Homecoming Saturday the women start at 11:00 a.m. and the men at 1:15 p.m.
Connor Allen, Sports Editor