UTM vs. Algonquin College - OCAA Provincial Championships Game Recap - October 29th 2015

Men's Varsity Soccer; UTM vs. Algonquin College - OCAA Provincial Championship Game (October 29)

ETOBICOKE, ON (October 29th) – The University of Toronto Mississauga Varsity Eagles men’s soccer team traveled to Centennial Stadium to compete against Algonquin Thunder in the opening round of the 2015 OCAA soccer championships.

The UTM Eagles in their inaugural season, had a play-off qualifier win last weekend against Mohawk College which was a hugeconfidence boost heading into Thursday’s opening match. Mohawk had been on a 5 game unbeaten streak before meeting the UTM squad. 

The Algonquin Thunder, who reign as the 2014 provincial champions and currently sit 4th best in the country, were taken back by UTM’s skill level. The teams didn’t only face each other on the field they also battled the swirling winds of Centennial Stadium.

Even though it wasn’t a favorable result for UTM - losing 2-0 to the Thunder - the game was a moral victory.

2015 OCAA rookie of the year Marco Natoli gave the UTM defense troubles early on. Fans held their breath as the Eagle’s first half goaltender Josh Bowman stopped a Natoli breakaway opportunity. The sprawling saves put the momentum onto UTM’s side.

The Eagle’s had plenty of scoring opportunities throughout the match but couldn’t seem to adjust to the winds strength watching many balls soar above the Algonquin net.

In the 71st minute, Thunder’s Alex Amis scored the game-winning goal off a corner kick. Lucas Blain added an insurance goal in the 90th minute.

Gio McDonald (UTM) and Kieran Spring (Algonquin) were named players of the game for their respective squads.

Eagle’s head coach, Robert Brown, was proud of his team’s performance; they battled incredibly hard against one of the best teams in the country. He acknowledges that the team is a year or two away from beating teams like Algonquin but believes the talent at UTM belongs playing against the best.

There’s something about playing on the road for the Eagles who we’re 3-1-2 away from the Mississauga Campus North Field before today. Brown believes they play more hard-fought soccer on the road because there are limited distractions and the guys are focused and close together for hours before the match.

The Eagles look to take advantage of their road success when they play their Central Division rivals, Sheridan College, who lost their opening round game 3-2 in PKs to Cambrian College. The game will take place at 12:30 pm on Friday, October 30th.

 

Written by: Eric Hewitson, Photography by: Kyle Johnson