Lady Hawks start season by stopping Huskies

John Browne
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MUN women post a pair of shutout wins on opening weekend; Sea-Hawks men blanked twice by SMU

It’s only the first two games of the season, but it looks as if Memorial Sea-Hawks women’s soccer team is primed to make some noise in the Atlantic University Sport (AUS) women’s soccer conference.

The Lady Hawks swept a pair of games against Saint Mary’s Huskies over the weekend at King George V Park

Meanwhile, the Memorial men’s team dropped its first two games of 2013 to SMU at KGV.

“Good start, but it’s early,” cautioned MUN women’s team head coach Walt Mavin.

“I’m pleased with the way the girls played — especially the rookies.”

The Memorial women won 2-0 Sunday after taking a 3-0 decision Saturday.

After a scoreless first half, Memorial senior Lauren Windsor opened the scoring in the 67th minute in Sunday’s match.

Rookie Jessie Noseworthy added an insurance marker in the 83rd minute.

Defender Paula Whitten was named MUN’s player of the game.

In Saturday’s season-opener, rookie Jane Pope scored twice to pace the Sea-Hawks.

Pope, a highly-touted first-year forward, wasted no time in making an impact with the club as she opened the scoring at the three-minute mark.

She scored again at the 20-minute mark and while the third goal went in off a SMU defender, it was Pope’s cross attempt that set it up.

She was selected MUN’s player of the game for her efforts.

“We did a good job of keeping them out of our third of the field,” said Mavin.

“They (SMU) played stronger Sunday and hit the post when it was still scoreless.”

Mavin said his team is starting to take shape.

“The defence played well, but that was expected,” explained Mavin.

“We’ve got six or seven players who can defend, so we’ve got options there. Maria Oliver and Whitten returned this year, so those two in the middle at the back give us lots of experience and stability.”

The Lady Hawks have a week off before travelling to New Brunswick for a three-game road trip Sept. 20-22, when they play the UNB Varsity Reds, University of Moncton Blue Eagles and Mount Allison Mounties.

That time off makes for an ideal situation for Mavin and his club.

“It gives us another week to work on things that we know we need to work on as a team. There are things we need to improve on,” said Mavin, who noted the team probably play an exhibition game during the break.

“We’re not getting ahead of ourselves. It’s only two games. We’ve got lots of tough competition ahead of us starting in two weeks.”

Meanwhile, the MUN men’s team was beaten 1-0 both Saturday and Sunday by the Huskies.

“We made one mistake in both games and got punished both times,” said MUN men’s soccer coach Scott Betts.

“I’ve often said you can’t make mistakes in this league because teams will punish you, but we still need to get three or four scoring opportunities ourselves.”

Saint Mary’s fifth-year midfielder Rodrigo Faria del Carvalho scored the game-winner in the fourth minute of play Sunday. Billy Kennedy’s goal in the 83rd minute was the difference Saturday

“We were pretty equal to them Saturday,” said Betts. “We came out flat Sunday and they scored early. We had a good chat at half time and came out a different team and battled hard the rest of the way.

“We were just unlucky not to be able to create scoring opportunities.”

Like the women’s team, the men’s squad  is off this week, and that’s fine with Betts.

“It’s a really good opportunity for us to get organized,” said the coach whose team had just a few workouts before the season openers.

“It’s a time for us to get focused and get everyone on the same page.”

Organizations: Atlantic University Sport, University of Moncton Blue Eagles and Mount Allison Mounties.That

Geographic location: Saint Mary, New Brunswick

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