On Saturday October 5, the UTM Varsity Eagles men’s soccer team faced off against the Fanshawe Falcons on our home field. The guys played a tough game and put a lot of effort into their plays, but unfortunately came up short and lost 1-6. The Falcons played aggressively from the start of the game, taking out Eagle’s team captain, number 16, Adam Czerkawaski in the first half. Czerkawaski played a great game, but had to sub off early because of injury. From here, the Eagles weren’t afraid to put the Falcons in their place and played an overall head-to-head physical game.

In the first half, UTM kept good composure and had some good communication. Goalie, number one, Braeden Pinto communicated most and helped direct the team throughout the game. The team didn’t get many offensive opportunities in the first half, but number four, rookie, Faris Ammari was able to open up some chances by making good runs, crosses, and putting early pressure on the opposing team. UTM’s number eight, Zimba Galloway played a solid game as well and helped out both offensively and defensively in the middle by stepping up and always being first to the ball. Even though the team had limited scoring opportunities, number 17, Damian Koscienlniak was able to score the first goal against the Falcons by finishing with a strong header. This left the score 1-2 at half-time with the Falcons in the lead.

Despite the score, the Eagles started to pick up their game in the second half. They showed better teamwork and stringed more passes together down the field. They were even able to execute more offensive plays led by second-year player and 2018/2019 rookie of the year, number 10, Jamari Whyte, senior player, number nine, Mohammad Golmakani, and number 19, Jens Winkel, who all demonstrated great ball control throughout the whole game. The Falcons executed quick counter attacks throughout this half, but our defense was able to shut them down. Eagle’s goal keeper, Braeden Pinto made many exceptional saves that denied the opposing team of possible goals. UTM’s number 18, Andre Pinto, number two, Mark Barbuto, and number 26 Eric Halar all played well and held a strong defensive line. Even with a strong defensive line, the Falcons kept pressing the Eagles again and again throughout the game. This left the final score at the end of the second half 1-6.  An unfortunate loss for the Eagles and an end to their four-game winning streak.

Overall, our UTM Eagles played well despite the results. They improved more in the second half by playing together more as a team and making more passes. They were also able to create some offensive plays from time to time, mostly in the second half. For their next game, I hope to see them play as well as they did against the Condors. If they can start off with a sharp offense and bring that same determination, skill, teamwork, and technique to the field like they did the week before, they’ll definitely be able to finish with a win. UTM’s next home game (at South Field) is on Tuesday October 16 at 4:30 pm. Come out and support your fellow Eagles on the pitch next week. Good luck Eagles and see you there!

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