McMaster soccer is the OUA’s newest champion
In a tense faceoff against Toronto Metropolitan University, McMaster won by one goal to be crowned champions
The final game of the Ontario University Athletics season saw the McMaster men’s soccer team take on Toronto Metropolitan University. In Saturday night's game at Downsview Park, the team looked to win it all.
Toronto Metropolitan looked to be a menacing side. Their team contained four OUA All Stars, with two players earning first team honors, and two winning second team honors. The team finished in identical place with McMaster, finishing the regular season in second place in OUA East Division.
McMaster had four of their own players named OUA All Stars. One player was named to the OUA first team, and three players were named to OUA’s second team. With both teams almost equally matched, the game would come down to a very small margin.
The match began with a slow tempo, without either side creating many opportunities. Within just the first half of play, TMU received a red card. The player given a red card was OUA First Team All Star, Luca Di Marco.
Despite the Marauders being up a player, they struggled to capitalize. It was not until the 79th minute of play that McMaster was able to score. A goal by Amir Shirazi gave the game to the Marauders.
McMaster held onto this lead firmly for the remainder of the match. It paved way for their first OUA Championship win since 2012.
Impressively, rookie head coach Chris Markou would take his first ever title while coaching the team. It is quite an accomplishment under any circumstances, never mind in a coaches first season.
This win puts the Marauders into fourth seed in the U Sport National Championship, hosted in Kamloops, B.C. The team will look to challenge for this years National title, with their first game against the host, Thompson Rivers University.