The Senior boys soccer squad hosted Oak Bay October 17 in the final round of league play, with supporters from both sides treated to a highly entertaining match. In the end, with SMUS clawing back a one goal deficit on three different occasions, the contest finished 3-3. Strikers Michael Baart and Brian Im (2) hit the score sheet, with the Blue Jags finally able to find the net after two weeks of failing to finish multiple chances.
The result left the Blue Jags in fourth position in an eight team Tier 1 league that has been the most competitive in recent memory. Indeed, as Colonist Cup playoffs kick off on October 24, any of the top six squads could lift the trophy. SMUS opens against a well balanced Reynolds outfit in quarterfinal action.
Senior Boys Developmental
The Senior boys developmental team came up just short in an away match against league leading Esquimalt. Nonetheless, all the players can be proud of the improvements made, as they produced their best performance of the season.
The game was extremely competitive for the entire 80 minutes, with the home goalkeeper standing tall on any number of occasions. SMUS tackled tenaciously and kept possession well. As has been the case all term, David Boroto and Matt Shin worked feverishly to provide opportunities for strikers Warren Marriott and Saeed Shokoya. In the end, a single goal separated the two sides. Unfortunately for the Blue Jags, the marker went to the Dockers, who prevailed 1-0.
The team now awaits other league results to see if it will qualify for the Colonist Shield playoffs.
At the Junior level, SMUS hosted Stelly’s in a sudden death quarterfinal. In a tense and action packed first half, goalkeeper Jasper Bosley was forced to make at least two highlight reel saves to keep the game scoreless.
Then, early in the second frame, a Stelly’s shot caromed back off the post, with the Blue Jags’ defenders lucky to scrape away the ensuing rebound after a wild scramble in front of the net. Whether or not this missed chance deflated the Stingers is hard to say, but from that moment on SMUS took control of the contest.
First, Ben Edwards connected from the penalty spot, and after a hand-ball decision, Hari Ikonomou did likewise. Then, left wing Tyler Strandberg completed a storming match with a superb cross to Joe Johnson, with the latter slotting home an angled drive to make the final score 3-0.
With the victory, SMUS moves to the City semifinal round, against Claremont. The league game between the two saw the Spartans claim a 3-2 win. All this suggests a close-fought encounter with the winner reaching the City final and qualifying automatically for the Island Tournament.