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Soccer teams geared for playoffs

by Archives October 30, 2002

Soccer Sunday, with the last of the regular season games for both squads, ended with similar results against McGill. However, the repercussions of the women’s and men’s respective 1-1 and 0-0 tied games were by far different.

Despite qualifying for the playoffs, the women needed a win to guarantee third place in their conference, and avoid a first round meeting with first place Laval. However, the point obtained from the 1-1 draw turned out to be enough, as Montreal and UQTR tied as well, giving Concordia third rank by one point.

Cheryl Matthews came in as a substitute in the 65th minute to give the Stingers a short-lived lead, as McGill tied the game in the very next minute.

Despite that short letdown after scoring the opening goal and allowing McGill back in the game, this was a result full of effort and desire. Head Coach Jorge Sanchez believes that the Stingers were the better team.

“We were disappointed somewhat with the draw,” said Sanchez. “It was a very gritty and gutsy performance, and I was very happy with the effort.”

No one player exemplifies that grit more than Anne Marie Lachapelle. A natural mid-fielder, she was forced to play sweeper, a position she have never played before. She was thrown into the position because starter Shannon Ransom was nursing an injury from the previous game.

“I was very nervous before the game,” said Lachapelle. “I am a very calm person, and there is too much stress in that position. But once the game started, I settled down. I hope it was the first and last time.”

It might not be the last time she plays that position, as the Stingers have a meeting with the very same Martlets this upcoming Friday in the first round of the playoffs.

The men’s fate, unlike the women’s, was predetermined prior to this game.

They had clinched third place, which meant that this game did not count towards regular season standings.

However, to say that it meant nothing at all would be incorrect.

Whenever McGill and Concordia play one another, there is always pride on the line with the rivalry famous between the schools.

These two squads will meet each other in the first round of the playoffs, so Concordia wanted to send a message through last Sunday’s matchup.

Despite resting many regulars from the line-up, ConU’s message in the 0-0 draw was that it was not going to be easy for the Redmen come playoff time, as they showed strong defence throughout the entire game.

“You never want to lose to McGill,” said goalkeeper Steve McCauley, whose penalty shot save in the final minutes kept the game scoreless. “Even though it meant nothing in the standings, and we had our best weapons on the bench, we still played a hard game.”

Among those on the bench were team captain Mehdi Mourali and Ammar Badawieh, two of the Stingers most potent offensive weapons. The players were benched to keep their legs rested and free from injury, promising an all out war come playoff time next Friday.

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