The Concordia Stingers women’s soccer team had mixed results in this year’s indoor season. The team was looking to build on a decent fall season, in which they barely missed the playoffs.
The indoor season started with three home fixtures against McGill, Sherbrooke and Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières. In the season opener against rivals McGill, Concordia was on the wrong end of a three-nil score line.
Head coach Jorge Sanchez’s side stepped up their next two home matches, earning a 1-1 draw against Sherbrooke on Jan. 27 and picked up a deserved 3-1 victory against the Patriotes.
The following three matches to end the season were on the road to Montréal, UQAM and Laval. The Stingers struggled against the Carabins on Feb. 10 as they allowed two goals right before halftime. They would allow another in the second half to lose 3-0.
The weekend that followed, the Stingers made up for the big loss by hammering the UQAM Citadins four-nil. This was Concordia’s first clean sheet of the season and biggest victory.
In the final match of the season, the maroon and gold had a tricky road encounter against the Laval Rouge et Or in Quebec City. With both teams tied in fourth, the winner would secure home field in the playoffs. Concordia was handed a massive 7-0 loss. This was their worst loss in both the fall and winter seasons.
The fifth-place Stingers side had to rematch the Rouge et Or in the first round of the playoffs. ConU was unable to learn from their previous match and lost 3-0.
Concordia’s record, not including the playoffs, ended at two wins, three losses and one draw.
The Stingers have some positive and negative points to take from this season.
Going into the season Sanchez made it very clear his side was trying to ensure a more attacking style of play. The tactic had some pros and cons. When the team did score, they were able to usually score over two goals in those matches. The only down side was the Stingers only scored in three of their matches.
Concordia was shutout four times, including the playoff match against Laval. The Stingers ended the regular season with eight goals for and 15 against in their six matches. Half of these goals were scored by striker Jennifer Duff, who was named second team all-star by the league.
The goals against should worry the team going forward. Allowing an average of 2.5 goals per game will always make winning tough. The Stingers will need to tighten up the back ahead of the fall season.
Sanchez was trying to get his side playing attacking soccer, but it didn’t work as well as he would have hoped. Concordia does have one of the best strikers in the league, but the team will need even more firepower if they want to score goals consistently.
Focusing on the back line should be a priority. Employing defensive tactics doesn’t necessarily mean the team will be weaker than the opposition, but would rather make the team better organized and allow fewer goals. Conceding less will give ConU more chances of picking up points each match.
The maroon and gold will have until August to rest and recruit new players before the fall season begins in early September.