Stingers caught sleepwalking in nightmarish season opener at Loyola
The Concordia Stingers women’s soccer team were handed a debilitating 4-0 by way of the McGill University Martlets in Friday night’s season opener at the Loyola sports complex.
“It was a wakeup call,” said Stingers head coach Jorge Sanchez. “One, we have to execute much better in key moments and two, we have to stick to the gameplan.”
The Martlets looked like the more energized of the two sides, as they dictated possession and applied relentless pressure on the Stingers’ back-line. McGill forward Audrey-Ann Coughlan opened the scoring early in the first half, capitalizing off a loose ball scramble in the box following a Claudia Agozzino corner kick.
Coughlan’s big night was only getting started as she went on to complete the hat-trick late in the second half. The second-year kinesiology student who was an instrumental part of the Martlets attack is settling well in her new role as the team’s leading striker.
“We [the Martlets] have a very good system of moving the ball around and trying to find the gaps,” said Coughlan. “I didn’t know what to expect [heading into the game] because last year we had trouble playing against Concordia and the scores were never as big as this.”
Despite the poor performance, the Stingers lone bright spot came in the form of freshman sensation, midfielder Kaitlyn Fournier. The Pincourt native put on an impressive individual performance in her first career regular season game. However, a fierce competitor by nature, the loss weighed heavily on her conscious.
“I just felt like everyone was dead on the field,” said Fournier following the game. “I don’t know if they thought it was going to be an easy game, but we underestimated the other team.”
This week’s uncharacteristically sloppy performance will force the Stingers to recommit themselves to the discipline of coach Sanchez’s team-oriented philosophy.
“It’s not about individual performances, we still lost 4-0 … [Fournier] was dribbling through a lot of players but no one was giving her help, no one was taking initiative other than her,” said Sanchez. “We just made bad decisions at key moments.”
It looks like coach Sanchez’s girls were listening as they rebounded nicely despite the short turnaround in Sunday afternoon’s 2-1 victory against the Université de Trois-Rivières. Next up for the Stingers is a Friday evening tilt against the Université de Montréal at CEPSUM stadium.