No kicks this year for soccer men
Mustang eyes fixed on the prize
Yeomen? I think not
Rugby women advance
By Anthony Lafratta
The Western women's soccer team wrapped up their season on the weekend with convincing wins at Waterloo on Saturday and at home Sunday, against Brock.
The club was already assured a playoff spot heading into this weekend's play, but their two victories secured them an undefeated regular season and an OUA West division title.
Previously, the Waterloo squad was the only team the Mustangs had failed to defeat, as the teams tied a Sept. 23 match.
Sunday's home game, a 3-0 victory, was dominated from start to finish by the Mustangs.
Western frequently created effective scoring chances, while limiting Brock's opportunities and the margin of victory would have been far greater, if not for the admirable Brock goaltending.
Forwards Cristina Bonasia and Jessica Van Dyk scored first half goals to set an early pace, while forward Chrystal Johnston scored late in the second half to thwart any hopes of a Brock comeback.
Despite a great run of success in the regular season, Western assistant coach Mary Riezebos said nothing can be taken for granted as the Mustangs enter the post-season.
"It's a new season, we have to take it one game at a time," Riezebos said about the playoffs. She said the team's goal was to have a chance at hosting the finals. "[The weekend] set the stage for the playoffs; it's good to finish strong."
Veteran Jody Patterson has seen a good regular season go sour in the playoffs before and knows bigger tests await.
"At this point in the season, [being undefeated] means nothing. I've been on a team that was unbeaten in the regular season and lost in the first round of the previous year, so we've still got to remain focused," Patterson said.
The team's dramatic turnaround from a last place finish did not come as a surprise to Riezebos. "We have a strong foundation of returning players from last year's team, as well as an excellent crop of rookies," she said.
It is not only Western's supporters that have high praise for the team. Brock Head coach Ron Gourlay said Western's playoff chances are excellent.
"Good height, strong physical play, strong goaltending and super team play," will carry the Mustangs all the way to the national finals, Gourlay said.
The team starts their playoff run this Saturday at home against McMaster.