The Stingers got their second victory of the season when they played host to the UQÁM Citadins on Sunday afternoon. After a scoreless first half, Concordia striker Andrew Bryan found the back of the net in the 73rd minute to earn his side an important three points.
After a big loss to league leaders Montréal last Sunday, Concordia was happy to welcome back Bryan and Fabian Troche to the starting lineup. Both players missed that match due to suspension.
The action started with Bryan almost putting the Stingers up by a goal two minutes in. He controlled a through ball from the midfield and set off towards the opponents’ net. A Citadins defender was able to catch up to Bryan and forced him to shoot wide.
The Citadins would see their first major chance come in the 37th minute. UQÁM played a corner kick to the near post which was met by Imad Agday’s head. The ball deflected off the crossbar and was recovered by the Stingers.
Two minutes later, Concordia answered back by hitting a post of their own. A low cross from the left side found Stinger Gabriel Quinn atop the box and his powerful blast nailed the crossbar.
To end the half, both sides had two big opportunities to open the scoring. UQÁM managed to hit another crossbar, while a Concordia two-on-one resulted in a diving save by the Citadins goalkeeper.
Early in the second half, the maroon and gold won a free kick from around 25 yards out. Bryan stepped up and curled a shot off the nearside post.
In the 55th minute, Stingers defender Stephen Meterissian missed a tap-in to give his side the lead. Two minutes later, he would miss another chance, this time from a header.
UQÁM had another decent opportunity in the 69th minute. Charles Noël took control of the ball and set off alone towards Concordia keeper Remo Taraschi. Taraschi’s charge resulted in Noël trying to chip the ball into the goal. The effort barely missed the target.
In the 73rd minute, the deadlock was finally broken. After a good combination play by the Stingers in midfield, center back Christopher Mirasyedi sent a perfect long ball to Bryan. Bryan controlled the ball with a good first-touch and blasted home a shot from inside the box.
The Stingers would manage to conserve the slender one-nil lead until the final whistle.
“We played well in the first half. We stuck to a very simple game plan and we got the result,” said Stingers Assistant Coach Francois Bastien. “It’s not too late to get a little bit of momentum going on, so I hope that carries through to the next games.”
The key to Concordia’s victory came from an organized back line and some good attacks. The team was able to keep the ball in UQÁM’s half of the field, thus eliminating the possibility of an attack on their own goal.
“My team played solid at the back,” said Remo Taraschi. “It’s like we’re playing playoff soccer right now and they’re putting their bodies on the line to make things easier for me.”
Concordia will close out the season this coming week with a game on Friday night when they travel to Sherbrooke to play the Vert et Or. The Stingers return home on Sunday afternoon to face the Laval Rouge et Or.