Thunder Men’s Soccer Endure Two Tough Opening Weekend LossesPosted on: Sep 8, 2014
A tricky opening ACAC weekend turned even trickier for the 2014 edition of Concordia Thunder Men's Soccer. Starting on the road to the ACAC North newbie Augustana Vikings was never going to be easy. Good possession play and a good work rate were not enough as the home side took all the points. Two opening goals conceded from set plays had the Thunder thinking twice. Despite these, the response was decent with veteran Garnet Coria and rookie Mas Arya notching solo efforts to spark a potential comeback. In the second half, a good piece of wide play and a diagonal cross ball put German import Marcel Malek in for an emphatic finish and the chance to equalize, but it was not to be. Despite pressing for it, the home side dropped deep and closed up shop effectively to see out the match 4-3. The tireless Arya was named Player of the Game but in his return to the Thunder after a year's absence, it was Elvis Ceman – the quiet leader – who was 'Man of the Match'.
Things got even tougher the next day for the Thunder's home opener hosting last season's provincial runners up, the NAIT Ooks. Concordia spent large portions of the match defending and went into the half down 2. Chins dropped after conceding two weak goals early; another 'thinker' for the hosts to consider. After making some changes, the Thunder threatened early in the second period, actually finding the back of the net on some good combined play only to be pulled back for a not-so-obvious offside. However, 2 matches in less than 24 hours caught up to the hosts and clearly favoured the visitors who were still fresh having not played the night before. NAIT's third and final counter came against spent legs for the Thunder in the 89th minute leading to the 3-Nil NAIT victory. Veteran Keeper Cody Hogberg gave the team a boost in his first appearance between the sticks and earned well-deserved Player of the Game honours, having made some big saves and keeping the Thunder close. New Thunder Associate Coach Ian Skitch remarked post game that "this was an early learning experience and will ultimately serve the group and staff well moving forward."
The Thunder will now have a week of rest and good practices to get ready to host the Huskies from Keyano College on Saturday, September 13th.