By: Ian McAlpine
The Algonquin Thunder women’s soccer team finished off their home opening weekend with a 6-0 victory over the Sir Sanford Fleming Knights on Sept. 16. After being held scoreless in her first two games, striker Sabrina Solymar got on the board in a big way by beating the Fleming keeper three times for a hat trick.
“It feels really good, especially because I was having troubles in the first two games,” said Solymar. “To finally break it and then get two extra on top of that was pretty great.”
Jaymie Baldree, Amanda Greene and Rosa Navas also scored for the Thunder, who remain undefeated so far this year. The Thunder dominated play from the opening whistle. “That was our goal for today’s game, you know, just to set the tone right away,” said assistant coach Carlos Avalez. “They gave us a lot of time and space and we took advantage of it. We capitalized and that’s what good teams do.”
Solymar opened the scoring for the Thunder in the 12th minute by sailing a shot from distance over the head of the Knight’s goalkeeper. Just a minute later she scored again in nearly identical fashion. “Well I actually don’t usually score like that,” said Solymar. “I usually score off breakaways and just kind of slip it in so the first one I was extremely excited and I obviously jumped up and down. The second one I knew she [the goalie] wasn’t as good in the air and I had the opportunity, no one closed me down, so I just let it go.”
She completed the hat trick just two minutes into the second half after using her speed to beat her defender to the net and deflecting the ball past the Knight’s keeper from close range. “Pretty much on any team I’ve been on I’ve been one of, if not the, fastest person,” said Solymar. Veteran midfielder Jaymie Baldree scored a header from in close in the 20th minute to make the score 3-0 while midfielder Amanda Greene beat the halftime whistle by adding the fourth Thunder goal in the 44th minute.
Substitute Rosa Navas scored late in the 82nd minute to make it 6-0. “We tell them to keep playing their game,” said Avalez. “We never tell them to get off their game. Playing at this level you cannot tell them to stop scoring … It doesn’t look good for the other team but it is what it is.”
Fourth-year goalkeeper Jennifer Kelly and rookie Erin Byers split the shutout for the Thunder, marking their third consecutive game without conceding a goal. Kelly credits the Thunder’s defenders for a lot of her success. “Our back line is really good,” said Kelly. “We did lose one of our good back line members but we’re doing a really good job filling it in.”
The team will travel to Kingston to battle the St. Lawrence Vikings on Sept.19 before hosting the Seneca Sting on Sept. 22.