Volume 95, Issue 10
Tuesday, September 18, 2001
Men's soccer start perfect
Western wins first two at home
By Ryan Dixon
Two games, three goals and countless extra efforts amounted to a winning weekend for the Mustangs' men's soccer team as they opened the season with victories on Saturday over Windsor 2-1 and on Sunday against Guelph 1-0.
While the Mustangs had come from behind to beat the Lancers, they held the advantage over Guelph for the majority of the game, with Ciaran McCarthy striking early for Western.
Guelph head coach Keith Mason said his squad's sluggish start was due to a lack of playing time.
"Western played [Saturday] and I think that made a bit of a difference. That first 20 minutes, we were diabolical. We weren't bad, we were very, very poor. During that time, Western scored and to be fair, should have scored two or three more," he said.
Mason added he was happy with the way his team performed in the later stages of the match.
"We played very well in the second half. I thought we dominated the second half," Mason said. A lack of touch around the net hurt the Gryphons' chances of winning, he added.
"We pressured [Western], but never really tested their goalie with any serious threats, which was disappointing. We penetrated them two or three times and you have to take [advantage of] one of those [chances]," Mason said.
Western head coach Rock Basacco said he was happy with his lads, but wished they made things a little easier on themselves.
"We had a very strong first half. Guelph didn't play yesterday, so they seemed to be a little sharper in the second half. We created a lot of great chances on the first half and capitalized on the one and it would have been nice to get a second to take a bit of the pressure off," Basacco said.
Basacco went on to say he sees the firepower in place up front, it just needs to be ignited.
"We've got guys that have got great talent, great skill and, in one on one situations, can be very deadly in terms of getting by the defender and getting the shot away. The first five minutes of the game, we missed three opportunities and if you put those away, it takes a little bit of the pressure off instead of having to fight, fight, fight for the full 90 minutes," Basacco said.
Basacco explained getting a second score would have alleviated much anguish.
"The whole team has to play defensively and when you're always having to fight defensively, it takes away energy you could be putting into your attack," he said.
Copyright © The Gazette 2001