BY JORDAN JOHNSTONE
The Conestoga Condors’ men’s varsity soccer team battled against St. Clair in the home opener at Woodside Park in Kitchener on Sept. 6.
The Condors got off to a great start, striking first in the seventh minute of play. After great defensive play by the Condors, Conestoga looked primed to take the lead into the second half until St. Clair scored in the 42nd minute to tie the game.
A hard fought second half ensued, with Conestoga retaking the lead in the 75th minute with a goal by rookie midfielder Yalcin Uyar. After this the match became rough and yellow cards were assessed to each team. After another yellow card was handed out to the Condors, St. Clair scored on the resulting penalty kick to tie the match. In the 82nd minute heartbreak occurred when St. Clair scored a goal that deflected off of several players and the post, completing the comeback.
In the second game of the season, Conestoga took on Lambton on Sept. 11. It was an exciting first half in which both teams had plenty of chances and exchanged goals. In a close second half, Lambton scored the only goal, securing the victory.
The Condors played Niagara in their first road game of the season on Sept. 13. With some key injuries to a couple of players, Conestoga fell behind 3-0 going into the second half.
“We started off slow,” said rookie forward Josh Deming. “We had a weak first half and had two injuries.”
However, the Condors would not go quietly and stormed back in the second half with two goals of their own. But, heartbreak was again in store for the Condors after a missed penalty kick stalled the comeback and sealed the 3-2 victory for Niagara.
The men’s team also played games Sept. 17 and 20, and have three games left this season to turn their playoff fortunes around.
“The quality of teams is a lot better than last year,” said Aldo Krajcar, head coach of both men’s and women’s varsity soccer teams, about the opponents this season.
The last home game the Condors have is Sept. 30 at Woodside Park in Kitchener.
The Condors’ women’s soccer team has had a more successful start to the season. After playing to a 1-1 draw against St. Clair, the women have won two straight beating Lambton 3-1 and Niagara 2-0. They are sitting with seven points in the standings.
“I think we’re going to make playoffs. It would be nice to finish first or second so we don’t have to play Algonquin College. They’re practising six or seven times a week,” said Krajcar.