After a slow start to the season, the men’s soccer team, Sooke Loggers, played against the Peninsula Slayers and harvested a strong victory with a five-nil win.
The Loggers traveled out to Sidney’s Iroquois Park this past weekend and thrashed the Peninsula Slayers 5 nil, outplaying Peninsula from start to finish.
“All of my players got a chance to see the park so I was most happy with that,” team coach Drew Porter said. “We signed two more players this week that will bolster the squad even more. Kirk Snelling, a former Celtic, came out to practice for a run last week and liked the look of things, so I was thrilled to sign him as he will bring great experience and talent to a young squad.”
Finding committed players is an ongoing challenge.
“Work and family commitments is something you always have to work around when you put a team together, nobody here at the amateur level gets paid to play so a guy like Kirk, with his calibre, I’ll take him when I can get him,” said Porter. “Ryan Haldane was my other signing and it looks like he has great athletic ability. He is a big aggressive guy who shows a ton of promise in front of the goal. The guy isn’t afraid to shoot which makes him a natural up front. We will just have to see how it all unfolds.”
The Sooke Loggers Division 3 senior mens’ soccer team hit their stride on the Thanksgiving long weekend and dominated Bays United for a 4-1 victory.
“It could have been 10-1 if several goal-mouth scrambles and a couple of posts and bars hadn’t got in the way,” said Porter about the Thanksgiving game. “I knew we were ready to turn the corner and come up with a decisive win, I’m just glad it was this weekend.”
Games previous to the Thanksgiving weekend have not been as fruitful.
Two weeks ago the Loggers lost a squeaker to Cordova Bay 3-2 and the next week after that they came up a little flat and tied the Golden Wings from Campbell River. Both of those games, according to Porter, the Loggers could have come away with wins, “but some less than acceptable refereeing especially in the Cordova Bay game killed us.”
Sometimes, it’s the talent. Sometimes it’s the refereeing.
“That one was hard to swallow after coming back from a goal down to leading 2-1 and then having the referee decide the game with two botched calls that led to the Cordova Bay comeback. Oh well, you just have to suck it up and move on to the next game,” said Porter.
The following week the Loggers played the Golden Wings from Campbell River and had a ton of chances but ran into a goalie that stood on his head. He really made some uncanny saves and the Loggers just couldn’t stick it past him. “A real credit to the guy,” assessed Porter, “he had a great game in goal.”
That was two frustrating weekends in a row for the Loggers. There was no lack of effort from our players — just no luck what-so-ever.
Great credit goes to the Sooke players this last weekend against Bays. Their consistent effort payed off to earn the 4-1 win which was extremely gratifying to watch. They played the ball on the ground, kept their shape for the most part of the match and were good in all facets from defending to attacking.
Very exciting game to watch as they drummed up some clever plays. If you weren’t at the soccer park on Sunday, you missed and entertaining game. Paul Rudd scored one of the best hat-tricks Sooke has seen in a long time and Daniel Bergerud added the other. Great credit goes to Brendan Herlihy on a late call-up to play in the pipes for the Loggers.
“Brendan wasn’t the busiest keeper on the day however, when he was called on to make the saves and distribute the ball he did all the right things for us,” said Porter. “It’s great when you can look to other players within the club to help out when needed. I have been running the boys pretty hard at practice and it’s showing in our play. This weekend especially I thought our fitness showed. We just looked that much stronger than the opposition.”
Hard work is in their future.
“If the boys think I’m going to let off in terms of fitness, they are sadly mistaken,” said Porter. “The hard work during the week always pays off. We’ve hit a stride now and I want to do everything I can to keep us there.”
The two consecutive wins have pumped the players.
“We have strung a couple of solid wins together so the boys have got a real thirst for the wins now. Our next game is against Nanaimo this next weekend at home so I look for another strong performance from us,” said Porter. “Competition for positions is always a good catalyst for the make-up of a team and it looks as though the dilemma of choosing a starting line-up is becoming a more difficult chore for me. That in itself is a good thing. Best players will always start which makes it tough for me cause all my guys are playing well. Some of the quality play these guys are producing is comparable to Division 1 soccer. Not only the play but some of the goals scored this weekend were spectacular.”
Just remember the name. Sooke Loggers.