The second weekend of September saw the OUA seasons continue, the OCAA season kick off, and a return home for local CSL team Kingston FC. The majority of the games took place out of town, in the Greater Toronto Area in fact, while Kingston FC had the weekend at home all to themselves.
In the OUA, RMC was playing the University of Toronto on Saturday and Ryerson Sunday, while Queen's played the same teams, but in the opposite order. St. Lawrence kicked off their outdoor season with a visit to the Centennial Colts in Scarborough on Sunday afternoon, and Kingston FC faced off against the Serbian White Eagles from Toronto on Saturday evening.
In the earlier match, the Kingston FC B squad fell 3-1 to the Serbian White Eagles B team. GKSSA player Matt Mountford scored Kingston's only goal of the match.
As usual, the women kicked off first and the game was a tight, scoreless affair until injury time at the end of the first half when Riley Filion scored directly off of a corner kick to give the Gaels a 1-0 lead. The second half was much more open as Queen's put three more goals past the Rams with Mikyla Kay scoring in the 51st, Kingston-area native Brittany Almeida scoring her first OUA goal in the 65th, and Kayla Crnic finishing the 4-0 scoreline off in the 85th minute. Sabrina Carew started the game, making two stops before being replaced by Rachel Burton for the final 15 minutes of the match.
The men did not fare quite as well, but still came away with a strong performance. Tommy Hong scored early for the Gaels, in the 6th minute, on a cross from midfielder Chris Michael (reported on the season-opening roster sheet as standing a mere 5'4" tall, about a foot shorter than his actual height). Ryerson knotted the game up in the 29th on a deflected shot that beat GK Dylan Maxwell. With no further scoring in the match, the match ended 1-1.
Things were a bit different on Sunday against the Varsity Blues for both the men and women. The first half of the match was very tight with no actual scoring chances being created, but the second half opened up a fair bit more. There were several chances in the second half, most of which went wide or hit the woodwork. Riley Filion had one of the best opportunities as she beat Toronto's GK in the 88th minute, but could not beat the crossbar. Moments later, Jessie De Boer got behind a corner kick, but Toronto's Sara Petrucci made the save, one of four she had to make in the game. Madison Tyrell claimed the clean sheet for the Gaels, only having to make one save.
Overall, the Gael women looked far better defensively in both games compared to their 3-0 loss to Ottawa on Wednesday evening, but still struggled to create many quality chances. The combination of the team's last three results dropped them from number on in the CIS Top 10 down to 4th spot, as Montreal slid into first and Ottawa 2nd.
The men played an extremely tight game against the Toronto Blues, stretching the day to 120 minutes of scoreless football at the Varsity Centre by half-time. Chris Michael broke the deadlock in the 59th minute, scoring off a rebound, putting the ball into the bottom corner from inside the goal area. Toronto FC Academy player Mario Kovacevic tied the game up in the 65th with a diving header. Twelve minutes later, striker Eric Koskins broke past the defense and chipped Toronto's GK to give Queen's a 2-1 lead with thirteen minutes left to play. Toronto pushed heavily at the end of the match, creating a number of chances to tie the game up, but Gaels players threw themselves in front of shots to keep the scoreline at 2-1 and a Queen's victory.
The RMC men lost by a similar scoreline giving up goals in the 11th, 31st, 62nd, and 84th minutes. The third goal by Toronto was scored by Kovacevic, his first tally of the season.
Sunday was a different story for both RMC squads as they faced the Ryerson Rams. The women played their second excellent opening half of the weekend, keeping the scoreline knotted 0-0, but in the 54th minute, GK Clarke tripped up a Ryerson player, conceding a penalty kick. The kick was successfully taken to the top left corner to give Ryerson a 1-0 lead. Ryerson had a few excellent chances to extend their lead, but Clarke stood tall in the net, eventually making 10 stops in the match. In the 89th minute, RMC were awarded a free kick just outside of the area and Michelle Hamilton swung a cross over to Jocelyn Coe and Coe made no mistake as she tied the game 1-1. The Rams responded well, pushing forward and getting a free kick as injury time began. The free kick bounced among a number of players before Leah Semeniuk buried the ball in the back of the net to give Ryerson the 2-1 lead and victory on the day.
The men faced off against a tough Ryerson squad and were outplayed throughout the first half, eventually going into half-time with a 2-0 deficit as the Rams scored in the 38th and 44th minutes of the match. No more goals were needed in the second half as Ryerson won, controlling the bulk of the play and forcing RMC GK Torin Semple to make 8 stops in the course of the match.
The men were not as successful, losing 4-0 with a goal in the 7th minute, a penalty in the 37th to make it 3-0, and the final goal in the 75th minute to round out the scoring. Joel Pickering and Matt Scrutton both picked up cautions in the match, the only ones to Kingston players on the entire weekend to do so.
St. Lawrence plays at home this Friday as the women face Loyalist College at 3pm and the men face George Brown at 5pm. RMC's women host Ottawa at 7pm on Navy Bay 4 on Friday evening. On Saturday, the Vikings host Cambrian College at noon (women) and 2pm (men), while Kingston FC hosts the North York Astros at the Invista Centre. Queen's visits Trent on Saturday at 1pm (women) and 3:15pm (men) before return home Sunday to host Carleton at the West Campus field at 1pm (women) and 3:15pm (men). RMC heads up to Trent on Sunday to play them at 1pm (women) and 3:15pm (men).