Soccer Mountaineers tumble during trip to Ottawa

The Mohawk Mountaineers men’s and women’s soccer teams failed to win in weekend pre-season play in Ottawa, but had valuable tune-ups for their Ontario Colleges Athletic Association West Region season openers later this month.

The women dropped a 4-1 decision to host Algonquin on Saturday. The Thunder won the OCAA silver medal last year and Mohawk head coach Renzo Castellani thinks Ottawa will have a great shot at making it to the national championship this season. Veteran Ali Bettger got the lone goal for the Mountaineers, who were missing some key players.

Sunday, the Mohawk women bowed 2-1 to Algonquin. Kelsey Forbes scored for the Mountaineers, who almost earned a draw late in the game when Bettger was denied by the crossbar. Despite the defeats, coach Castellani is optimistic about his team this season.

The men’s team had a rough go of things on Saturday in the Algonquin Thunder Soccer Tournament, losing 7-0 to the host side. The Thunder are the reigning Canadian college champions. Mohawk head coach Richard Bennett said the Mountaineers had great difficulty dealing with the speed of Algonquin’s artificial turf.

However, the squad adjusted nicely on Sunday and, despite losing 1-0 to the University of Ottawa, Bennett said, “I couldn’t believe it was the same team. It was like night and day.”

But a lack of finishing was the problem with Mohawk in Sunday’s game, failing to capitalize on three breakaways, while Ottawa made good on it’s only chance.

The OCAA regular season for both Mohawk sides will start at the Trafalgar Campus of Sheridan College in Oakville in just over one week. The Mountaineer men will meet the Bruins on Tuesday, Sept. 18 at 5:00 pm. The women see action at Sheridan the following day at 5:00 pm.