The rugby party's over
Western makes U of T feel blue
Men's rugby keep movin' on up
Champs explode in semifinal
Purple and White 'Stangs lose to red and blue Gaels
Champs explode in semifinal
By Sean Maraj
The Guelph Gryphons came flying into Western for their men's Ontario University Athletics soccer semi-final game Sunday, however they were quickly routed by the Mustangs 6-0.
Western, who now advances to the OUA finals for the fourth consecutive year, came out strong, backed by a strong defence and led by a devastating offensive attack.
Leading 2-0 at halftime, the floodgates opened in the second half and Western dismantled Guelph's defence, scoring four unanswered goals to complete the blow out.
After the game, Guelph head coach Colin Kelly said he was far from impressed with his team's performance on the field and thought they could have played much better.
"They were appalling. When we walked on the field not one player played up to par, we were totally out to lunch," Kelly said. "This was our worst performance of the year. I felt sorry for our goalkeepers no one was playing in front of them."
Western head coach Rock Basacco, on the other hand, said he was happy with his team's performance. Both offensively and defensively, however, he added he was not completely surprised by the Mustang victory. "The two games we played [against Guelph this year], we won. I didn't expect a whole lot," Basacco said. "We played well but didn't play the ball on the ground as we should. We played it better on the ground in the second half."
Ian Bahl, a Mustang striker and one of the goalscorers, said he was pleased with the team's performance, especially in the second half when the Mustangs spent most of their time putting pressure on Guelph's goalie.
"We started out pretty slowly, but it came together in the second half. We finished our opportunities," he said.
Basacco also commended his defence, a part of the game they have been working on over the past few weeks in preparation for the playoffs. The Gryphons , were allowed only a handful of chances at the net.
"They had a couple of chances and we made some mistakes, but [goaltender] Rob [Lave] did a good job," Basacco said. "We tightened up defensively and both keepers had to be sharp."
The Mustangs now look towards the OUA finals against Laurier University. Laurier has been the only team who has given the Mustangs trouble this year. Both meetings this season ended in a draw. Their first encounter ended in a scoreless tie and the most recent game here ended 2-2.
In a playoff situation, where the OUA title will be on the line, both teams will be looking to end the season-long deadlock.
"Laurier has a more controlled team, but we don't plan to make any changes," Basacco said about adjustments to his game plan for the future confrontation.
The Mustangs will play in the OUA finals this weekend at J.W. Little Memorial Stadium.