On a bitterly cold and windy Saturday morning in November, UCC hosted Crescent in the finals of another exciting season of soccer. With the top 2 teams in the division facing off in a winner take all game, both sides were ramped up and ready to hit the pitch in what would prove to be a very tight game. Right from the opening kick-off Crescent displayed their strong midfield play pushing the ball around to open up the play on the flanks. UCC held their own and it became a highly contested midfield battle. UCC played sound defensive soccer and awaited their opportunities and caused Crescent to give up some free kicks that would peg them in their own end to allow UCC to get the upper hand with a few scoring chances.
With some strong play on the wings, UCC began to impose their style of play. After gaining a free kick from 35 yards out, Arbaaz Ebrahim sent in an inviting cross that fell into the 6 yard box. Ethan Williams fought hard to get his foot on it and the Crescent keeper couldn’t handle the ricocheted shot and the ball ended up in the back of the net. 1-0 UCC. A crucial goal that would see UCC double its lead shortly thereafter on another free kick play. Even though the ball was cleared by the Crescent defence, a heads up play from Colin O’Dwyer kept the play alive. With a quick header back into the path of Liam Delaney on the right wing, Liam struck the ball first time across goal and into the far corner to make it 2-0. With the crowd going wild and momentum in UCC’s favour, Crescent did not let up and kept on attacking the UCC defence creating a number of scoring chances to cut into the lead before half-time. Some timely goal area clearances by Josh Dyer & Cole Parsons kept the clean sheet in the first half.
The second half saw Crescent playing some desperate soccer pushing forward with any chance they got to try to get a goal back. It was pretty much one way traffic with UCC relying a great deal on the counter attack to get up the field. Some chances were had by Colin O’Dwyer and Zain Assaf, but the score remained 2-0. As the saying goes, “we bent but we did not break” and this was very indicative of our strong defensive effort. Although Crescent did conjure up a number of scoring opportunities, the defence along with 2 very key saves by goalie Jay Kim kept Crescent off the score sheet and helped lead UCC to a 2-0 win to clinch the CISAA championship.
Great character and class shown by all UCC players in the way in which they played and conducted themselves both on and off the field. This is truly the “beautiful game” and the boys certainly displayed solid skill and composure against all opponents this year, especially in the face of adversity.
The coaches are extremely proud of their commitment and achievement this season. A huge thank you goes out to all parents for their continuous support of the team. And a special thank you to Mrs. Assaf for being the team parent and Mr. Ebrahim for taking such beautiful pictures at all games.
Thanks to the boys for making this another memorable season
As always, GO BLUES!!!!!!
Coaches Mirkovich & Scatozza