CHALLENGE CUP SOCCER
Cory Moore (right) of Holy Cross fends off Scott Knight of Feildians as he moves in on the Feildians goal during their Molson Challenge Cup soccer game at the King George V pitch on a rainy Wednesday night. Holy Cross won 2-0. Photo by Joe Gibbons/The Telegram
Holy Cross coach Bernard Fox Reddy cant put his finger on it, but theres something missing from his team, and hes not sure what it is.
It wasnt evident Wednesday night as Holy Cross/The Keg took an easy 2-0 win over Feildians Ernst and Young/Orenda on a pair of goals by Zack Wade in Challenge Cup provincial senior soccer play at King George V Park.
Were much better than last year, but were still not gelling as a team and I dont know why, said Reddy.
I dont know if some players are having trouble with our system of play or not. Were coming along, but were not there yet.
The win moved Holy Cross to within three points of league-leading and undefeated St. Lawrence Laurentians, who have 18 points after six straight wins. The defending champions also hold two games in had over the Crusaders.
Holy Crosss record is impressive considering the team has had difficulty putting a consistent starting lineup on the field because of injuries and players missing games due to holidays or other activities.
Most of the starters looked solid Wednesday.
Holy Cross took the game to Feildians from the opening whistle on a rainy night and the pressure paid off at the 10-minute mark.
Wade opened the scoring on a bang-bang play with Chris Butler.
Butler, who had a strong first half, sent a perfect pass from the wing across the top of the six-yard box and Wade, unmarked, jumped and headed the ball past Feildian goalkeeper Mike Organ.
Reddy was pleased with the work of Wade, who Wade completed the scoring at the 74-minute mark with his fourth goal of the campaign.
Hes scored some big goals for us this season. He works hard and he tackles hard, said the coach.
Tyler Putt handled everything sent his way to post the shutout.
Reddy feels his team has the talent to make it to the Challenge Cup final.
But weve got to prove it by working harder, he said. A lot of people are expecting us to do well this season, but we need a better effort in each and every game.
Holy Cross beat Marystown in last years Challenge Cup quarter-final but lost to Mount Pearl in the semifinal. St. Lawrence went on to win the championship, beating Mount Pearl.
Holy Cross has lost twice to the Laurentians already this season by scores of 2-1 and 3-1 in St. Lawrence, but Reddy has July 1 marked on his calendar. Thats when the Laurentians play Holy Cross in St. Johns.
St. Lawrence needs to be knocked off their high horse and, hopefully, were the ones who will do it, Reddy said. We know we can beat them, but its a matter of getting it done and that means everyone working hard.
Reddy admitted a win over the defending champions would go a long way in giving his team a much needed confidence boost.
Perhaps thats precisely whats missing right now.