In a crucial must-win situation, the Algonquin Wolves were determined on Oct. 14 to secure a victory away from their den as they faced the Seneca Sting in men’s soccer.
“We get to play them twice, and we get to go do it at their home, too,” said the Wolves’ Oscar Forward during a practice before the trip to Toronto.
In the practice, goalkeeper Nicholas Parry insisted the stats show the Wolves have a solid defence. They just need to maintain their focus throughout the match.
However, in the Oct. 14 game, the Wolves made mistakes early and were swiftly punished by two goals from Michael Pellegrini six minutes into the match.
Despite dominating possession after 18 minutes, the Wolves struggled to break through the Sting’s well-organized defence. Frustration mounted, leading to Forward receiving a yellow card.
To make things worse, Michael Iliopoulos, the key winger of the team, was injured.
Seneca came close to sealing the game at the end of the first half.
The second half saw Seneca extend the lead with two more goals. The Wolves managed to score one through an individual effort by Mecheri Mohammed Houssam, who was brought down in the penalty box.
Lorenzo Mayer, a Seneca midfielder, was sent off for an inappropriate gesture toward a Wolves’ defender after scoring Seneca’s fourth goal.
Despite being a man down, Seneca withstood the Wolves’ attacks, with two shots hitting the crossbar.
The 4-1 loss put the Wolves in fifth position ahead of their last game Oct. 15 at Centennial.
Despite the tactical strategies emphasized by the head coach during training sessions, the team is struggling to keep up with the pace of games.
“We are working on our attack, build-up and progression. With a short season, we always have stuff to work on and sometimes you just run out of time,” said Wolves’ coach Angus Wong.
Wong’s hope was to see his team more threatening against Seneca Sting did not come true. The team must improve its midfield and attack cohesion and capitalize on the numerous opportunities they create.
The team will need to step up their game with the playoffs around the corner.