With more than 5000 youngsters playing recreational soccer in the Greater Sudbury area, it would be impossible to attempt to cover every one of the 50 or so games that take place on most weeknights throughout the summer.
With this in mind, we thought that it might be appropriate to provide a "sampling" coverage from the various leagues, alternating between geographical locations within Greater Sudbury, as well as moving between different age groupings.
The following story provides coverage of recent U12 Mixed games that were played within the Walden Minor Soccer Association.**********
Trevor Liscum scored a pair of second half goals, lifting the Sudbury Credit Union to a 3-1 victory over Northern Metal Works Wednesday evening at the Hillcrest Sports Complex in Walden.
The U12 Mixed encounter remained scoreless at the half, as both teams featured strong defensive efforts, limiting even reasonably good scoring chances to a mere handful through the opening 35 minutes of play.
Riley Buchowski enjoyed the best opportunities for Metal Works, bursting down the left flank before being denied in close and drilling a direct kick off the crossbar later in the half.
Northern Metal Works also came close on a corner kick, as Alain Huneault was stopped on a pair of rebound attempts in tight. Failing to capitalize on their chances would prove costly in the second half when Liam Elliot was stopped on a penalty kick, but bounced back to find the back of the net only seconds later, opening the scoring for Sudbury Credit Union.
Holding a 1-0 lead, the team increased the advantage to a pair of goals when Liscum make good use of a decoy driving hard to the net on his left, arching a shot perfectly past Kieran Davie, keeper for the Metal Works crew.
Northern pulled to within a goal midway in the 57th minute as Tishalyia Nisbel played a lovely pass to Buchowski, who finished off the rush with a well-placed strike.
But Liscum sealed the deal some five minutes later, freed up near the half line for a one on one rush, mometarily slowed by the Metal Works' defender before breaking loose for his second goal of the game.
Despite surrendering three goals, goaltender Davie was flawless on penalty kick attempts, stopping a pair of close ranged shots in the second half. While the entire Sudbury Credit Union squad were full measure for holding the opposition to just a single goal, special mention should be made of the back line of defenders who held firm throughout the contest.
In houseleague soccer, it's sometimes difficult for coaches to find players willing to defend, happy to sacrifice their goal scoring aspirations in favour of shutting down the other team. Thankfully, this is not the case for the Credit Union crew.
"I've usually played as a defender," Abby Carter said after the game. "I just like stopping people and I find that I do well at it. You just have to focus on getting in people's way and not letting them past you."
While players on both sides put forth a solid effort, many seemed to appreciate most just the opportunity to get out and enjoy some times with some very familiar faces.
"A few of my friends are on the team, which is nice, because I get to see them every week if we don't see each other anywhere else," Carter said. That sentiment was echoed, not surprisingly perhaps, by members of the losing team as well.
"soccer is one of my favourite sports, I donít know why," Buchowski said. "I like running Ė Iíve always been a fast person, so you can show your speed off and your friends always play, so itís fun to play with your friends."
The evening featured another pair of games within the U12 Mixed division as Linda's Photography and Power Traxx played to a 1-1 draw while the Little Pizza Shop bounced an undermanned Battistelli's YIG bunch 7-1.
Phillip Barry (Linda's Photography) and Joseph Phillips (Power Traxx) traded goals on the far field, while Brandon Soucy scored four times to lead the way for Little Pizza Shop.
Myles Buisson added a pair of goals, with Julian Laino rounding out the scoring for the winners. Fielding only a total of seven players on this summer night, Battistelli's received a second half spark when John Leblanc converted a pass from Kayden Robinson for his team's only goal of the game.