Volume 92, Issue 20

Wednesday, October 7, 1998



Building blocks to success

Tom Baumgartner/Gazette

MAN, I WISH I COULD JUST USE MY HANDS. Destined to use only their feet, the Western men's soccer team is still trying to build tradition with another OUA title.

By John Dinner
Gazette Staff

Homecoming was a very successful weekend for Western's sports teams and the Mustang men's soccer team made certain they were no exception in their two big matches over the weekend.

At 4-1-1, the men had a real opportunity to extend their Ontario University Athletics lead, as they faced Brock at home on Saturday and then travelled to McMaster on Sunday.

On Saturday against Brock, Western was able to control the play and much of the game, resulting in a 2-0 shutout of the Badgers.

"We're very pleased with the way this team is progressing, we're now starting to do the things we want to do on the field," said Mustang head coach Rock Basacco. "In the second half of the game we really took control and we were able to make the kind of plays we want."

Goal scorers on the afternoon were Jon Hasson (50th minute) and Matt Gallo (60th minute), who scored on a beautiful one-on-one play.

On Sunday, the team travelled to Hamilton to face division rival McMaster and came away with a 2-2 tie, something the team is satisfied with, but not happy.

"We expect to win every game. A tie is okay and we're happy we got the point, but we feel we should be winning every time we step on the field," said rookie Ryan Leigh, who scored his first goal as a Mustang on Sunday. "We're building a tradition here. Western has won the last couple of OUA championships and we're trying to continue that this year."

The win and the tie give Western a two-point lead over Laurier and a three-point cushion over McMaster atop the OUA standings.

"I have no doubt that we can be tops. Teams around the OUA may have individual talent, but on the whole, as a team, I think we're the best," Basacco said. "I think we're finally starting to play up to our potential and we're finding the right combination of people on the field."

"One thing that I've found great is the unity of this team. It's one of the greatest strengths of this team and it has allowed us to be successful and given Western the chance to build something special here," Leigh said.

There is no time better than the present for the men's soccer team to reach its potential, as it heads into its final four games of the season, beginning today at home with a tilt against the Windsor Lancers at 3 p.m..

To Contact The Sports Department: gazette.sports@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998