Douglas College soccer teams developing as they transition through the season
By Michael Sopow, Contributor
The Douglas College Royals soccer teams began the weekend with both the men’s and women’s squads facing the number-one placed Vancouver Island University (VIU) Mariners on Saturday September 27, and finishing with the Capilano University Blues on Sunday September 28.
Though the women’s team lost 5-0, coach Chris Laxton commented after Sunday’s game that he believed Saturday didn’t reflect the true talent or mentality of the team: “Just some preventable defensive errors yesterday. I thought we actually kept the ball well. We just didn’t get in behind them. When you go down so big so early it’s tough to come back.”
Sunday’s game was truly a completely different story. The women looked ready to play, they looked motivated, they wanted to win, and their desire proved itself with the results. The Royals set the pace early on with a goal from Hayley Melvin in the eighth minute of the game. This boost of confidence and the Royals’ eagerness to win led to many successful tackles and allowed Douglas College to dominate the first half of the game. The energy that flourished in the first half was evidently carried right over to the second half as Marni McMillan scored a goal in the 46th minute to give the team a 2-0 lead and insurance until the final whistle.
The men’s team started their Saturday with a very close 1-0 loss to VIU, though on Sunday it was questionable whether or not they started the game with the same intensity that they usually bring. “Hard work is what we need. When you’re in tough you’ve gotta battle your way through it. We’re just not putting the work in—getting outworked every game,” said coach Paul Bahia.
The Blues seemed to be having most of the possession and the majority of the chances throughout the first half. It seemed as though something was missing from the mindset of the Royals players. They soon conceded a goal in the 24th minute and an unfortunate penalty just before the halftime whistle in the 45th—a flustered-looking Douglas College simply trying to figure out what they could generate for the remainder of the game.
Douglas definitely flicked a switch in the second half. In the first couple of minutes, it began as back-and-forth play with chances happening here and there, but then began the transition to a more Douglas College-controlled game. In the 78th minute, Simrin Rattanpal brought hope back for Douglas as he connected for the Royal’s first goal of the game. Though in the next minute following the goal, the Blues managed to score another goal from a fast break, leaving the score at 3-1. This unexpected goal did not diminish the Royals’ newfound spirits as they continued their efforts and managed to have Spencer Deboice score a goal off of a free kick in the 83rd minute. Unfortunately, even though they played hard to the end they could not tie up the game in the remaining minutes. 3-2 Capilano.