The St. Martin de Porres boys’ soccer season ended one game shorter than hoped for when the Kodiaks fell 3-0 to the Bowness Trojans May 29, in the Calgary Senior High School Athletic Association (CSHSAA) Division 3 semi-final.
“To create chemistry in an eight-game season with really crappy weather at the start is very difficult,” said Kodiaks co-head coach Jessica Hamilton. “I think what we did this season, looking at the number of kids we have and the number of actual soccer players we have, we did a great job.
“Hopefully, we’ll make it one game further [next year].”
Bowness, playing on its home field, controlled possession in the early minutes. The home team kept the ball in St. Martin de Porres’ half, generated a few scoring chances and, after half an hour, the dominant play paid off when Jonathan Doriles thumped a loose ball in the box past Kodiaks goalkeeper Nathan Canas.
The Trojans, which ended the regular season in first place of Division 3 with a 6-2-0 record, took the one-goal lead into the second half.
Frustration mounted for the Kodiaks as the second half began, and the team struggled to string together passes or hold its defensive structure. The Trojans capitalized on the visitors’ breakdown in concentration to score another goal mid-way through the half, when Arif Kos placed a low shot into the bottom corner of the Kodiaks’ net.
Bowness put the nail in the Kodiaks’ coffin in the final 15 minutes. Kahil Wilson scored with a nice knuckle-ball shot to the bottom left corner. The ball dipped as it flew toward the goal, making it difficult for Canas to read its trajectory.
“At the end of the day, there’s not much we can do about it,” said Kodiaks captain Chris Roberts. “I wouldn’t pinpoint anything specific. We had to be a little bit more organized. They matched us on that, and it was an important factor. It was a growth experience.”
The Kodiaks ended the 2019 regular season in fourth place, with a 4-3-1 record. After a strong regular season showing, St. Martin booked its spot in the semi-final May 23 with a 2-1 victory against the John G. Diefenbaker Chiefs.
“We took a young group heading into it, so there are a lot of positives to take from the season moving forward,” Roberts said. “I’m proud of how we developed this year and, moving forward, there are better things to come.”
While the Kodiaks’ captain and a handful of other seniors will graduate this spring, Roberts said there are many players will continue to keep St. Martin competitive.
“We have a few Grade 10s who I think are going to develop into real leaders,” he said. “The Grade 11s are already leading, so it looks promising.”