Muskie soccer teams look to rebound

The Muskie boys’ and girls’ soccer teams had a tough time at the St. John’s Ravenscourt tournament in Winnipeg over the weekend, dropping five of six matches collectively—all of them shutouts.
“I don’t know. We had a rough weekend,” said Adam Craig, co-coach of the girls’ squad. “We didn’t have all our players on the team.
“Definitely it was a team-building tournament.”
The girls were scoreless in their three games, losing 1-0 to Oak Park, 5-0 to Dakota Collegiate, and then 6-0 to host St. John’s Ravenscourt.
“As long as we can generate more offence, we’ll be okay,” Craig said.
The boys fared better in the win column, but suffered the black-and-gold’s biggest loss—a 9-0 shellacking to St. Paul’s, the reigning provincial finalist.
“Overall we learned a lot and it went all right,” head coach Shane Beckett said. “We didn’t necessarily end on a high note but it was a good learning opportunity for us.”
The boys opened strong with a 2-0 victory against host SJR, getting a first-half goal from Tyler Harris before captain Steve Boileau sealed the win in the second half.
But the Muskies didn’t fare as well in their second match-up against J.H. Bruns, allowing two goals in the final 10 minutes to fall 2-0.
That was followed by the blowout against St. Paul’s.
“I’m not one to make excuses. They’re a good soccer team,” Beckett said of St. Paul’s. “They’re very well-coached, they move the ball very well, and you can see why they’re victorious.
“Hopefully it was a character-builder, that last one.”
The tournament was made up of exhibition matches, which allowed both Muskie coaching staffs to stay positive in assessing team performances.
“We had pretty good ball movement throughout, we played four different keepers who, if you exclude the last game, all got good time and played really well,” Beckett noted.
“We got a real good look at where we want to slot guys . . . you see one thing in practice, but you see a whole other thing in games,” he added.
Craig was impressed with the standout performance of keeper Shannon Gibson, who did an “outstanding job.”
“[The] scores could’ve been a lot higher,” he admitted.
Both squads are looking to have their rosters closer to being finalized, having seen their players in action for the first time and with other players who were unable to attend last weekend’s tournament available for home matches this coming weekend.
The Muskies are hosting a tournament made up of matches that will count towards the league standings, with a few exhibition games to cap off the event.
Both the boys and girls will be in action starting Friday morning here.