(TIM SMITH/BRANDON SUN)
Mikayla Yuen of the Assiniboine Community College Cougars shows off some fancy footwork as Brianna Heinrichs of the Canadian Mennonite University Blazers moves in for the ball during Manitoba Colleges Athletic Association regular season action at the Optimist Park soccer complex on Sunday afternoon.
Neither Assiniboine Community College Cougars soccer team managed to score a goal in their first-ever Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference games, but both coaches feel they can compete in their respective leagues.
Morgan Strachan of the Assiniboine Community College Cougars controls the ball during a game against the CMU Blazers at the Optimist Park soccer complex on Sunday afternoon. ( TIM SMITH/BRANDON SUN)
The men’s team couldn’t finish in its opener on Saturday at Optimist Park, hitting the woodwork five times, as the Cougars fell 2-0 to the Red River College Rebels. On Sunday, the Cougars were outmatched by the Canadian Mennonite University Blazers and fell 3-0. ACC keeper Jordan Cristall made 24 saves in the match.
Cougars head coach Bo Kampmann admits his team needs to improve its midfield play and defensive recoveries, but he likes his players’ efforts through their first two games.
"I’m very happy with what I’ve seen in my team," he said. "There’s no doubt, and I expressed that very early on before we started this season, that this team has been practising for three and a half weeks and from what I’ve seen in those three and a half weeks to come to the point where we’ve had the two games, I’m very happy with the results."
Meanwhile, ACC’s women’s soccer team was caught off guard by the speed of play in its season opener, which it dropped 6-0 to Red River College. The team, however, adjusted to the faster tempo and improved as the game went on and again in Sunday’s 2-0 loss to the Blazers.
The Cougars were without a pair of starters, who were nursing knee injuries, on Sunday and head coach Mark Dabbs believes that greatly impacted the final score.
"I think the team that we played today, CMU, if we’re healthy we beat them," he said. "We’ll see them again. I think as the season goes on, we’ll be stronger and hopefully be ready for the championship weekend at the end of October."
Both Cougar teams return to the pitch on Sept. 28 when they host the Providence University College Pilots at Optimist Park.
» Brandon Sun
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 16, 2013