The McGill Martlets (1-1-1) soccer team went into Thursday night’s game at Molson Stadium looking to extend their winning streak to seven games. They were up against the Université de Sherbrooke Vert et Or (2-1-0), a team that has outplayed them in recent years. The two teams went back and forth in a close match for 90 minutes, but an added time goal handed Sherbrooke a 3-2 victory.
Sherbrooke opened the scoring in the 15th minute with a goal by Marie-Ève Jacques and remained dominant through the first half, despite fourth-year student Lisa Perrett answering with a goal for McGill just two minutes later. The Vert et Or continued to be in command throughout the half, containing the Martlets to their side of the pitch. Later in the second half, Sherbrooke jumped ahead with a 32nd minute strike.
“[We] had a hard time finding our targets and moving the ball forward,” Head Coach Jose-Luis Valdes said. “They were running a 4-3-3, pulling their mids high, and so our midfields didn’t quite know who to cover.”
Halftime changes reinvigorated the Martlets after the interval. McGill looked more composed in the second half, moving the ball down the field and pressuring Sherbrooke’s defenders, putting an end to the Sherbrooke’s first half dominance.
“We made a substitution to start the second half, and that helped us settle down,” Valdes said. “We had drawn up a couple of ideas to pressure Sherbrooke and create chances for [ourselves], and we we were able to play out of our own half.”
Into the second half, the Martlets were able to move the ball out of their zone and challenge the Vert et Or.
“We were pressuring them more and we had a lot more confidence,” Perrett said.
After fifth-year forward Daphnee Morency tied the game in the 66th minute with an unassisted strike, the Martlets looked poised to extend their undefeated streak with a draw. However, Sherbrooke scored in the final minute of added time, putting them up for good and handing McGill their first loss of the season.
“It was overall a positive game,” Morency said. “Disappointing, obviously, but the younger players really stepped up, and we improved from the first to second half.”
McGill hits the road for games against UQTR and Laval before they return home on Sept. 30 for their “Pack the Pitch game” against UQAM. Expect McGill to split their road series before their date with the Citadins.
The Sherbrooke Vert et Or is now 9-2-2 against the McGill Martlets since 2011.
"To reach our goal of being the top in the league, we are going to have to impose our playing style each and every game, no matter who the opponent.” — Third-year defender Justine Enns said following the Martlet’s loss.
Moment of the Match
In the 18th minute, just two minutes after Sherbrooke opened the scoring, Lisa Perrett scored off an assist from Daphnee Morency to tie the game.