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Voima grounds the Flyers in Alasat final
2014-07-04

The "Sudbury Soccer Snapshot" is a weekly feature that is being presented courtesy of Martin Martic Dentistry. Each and every week, from May 1st through until the end of September, a weekly newsletter will be produced, covering off much of what is on the go in the world of competitive soccer locally.

As well, a recreational soccer "game of the week" will be highlighted, rotating between the various houseleagues that exist in and around Greater Sudbury. In the off-season, the newsletter will scale back to a bi-weekly feature, focusing heavily on the hundreds of young soccer players who shift to the indoor game as the fields become snow-covered for the winter.

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With the Canada Day holiday falling on Tuesday, the bulk of the competitive CGSL and CSL teams took the weekend off, with only one local crew in action. The GSSC Impact U21 ladies have moved on to the next round of OWSL Cup action, picking up a comfortable 4-0 win, on the road, over Mississauga PCC.

First half goals from Dana Isaia, Riley McEwen and Courtney Ceccarelli provided the locals with a nice cushion, with Mackenzie Bell rounding out the scoring in the second half.

"All the goals resulted directly from topics we had done in training over the past two weeks," noted head coach Dayna Corelli. "Changing the point of attack, playing directly into the top target, combination play through the midfield, and crossing and finishing."

"The positive is that we were executing from the training ground into a game scenario." The Impact also received another clean slate from keeper Megan Coutu, with the ladies surrendering just two goals to date in a total of seven games.

"This is reflective of our back line and defensive center midfields defending within the team shape, and showing strong 1v1 defending when required," noted Corelli. "The defending has been an integral part to our results."

Because of a condensed Cup schedule, the U21 Impact will face a gruelling weekend ahead, battling the Barrie Spirit twice on the road and then adding a third game, Sunday afternoon, against the Burlington Bayhawks in the next round of Cup action.

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While youth teams may have been quiet, the same could not be said for the local men's loop as the Dieder Alasat Cup provided plenty of excitement, and a little surprise.

With Italia Flyers' sensation Michael Marcantognini averaging more than four goals a game, the strategy for Sudbury Athletic Voima in the Tuesday final at the James Jerome Sports Complex was simple - find a way to slow down the soon-to-be Michigan State Spartans freshman.

Pulling a page out of the current World Cup, Voima did exactly that, surrendering a first half goal to Brian Ashton but countering with strikes from Brandon Paquette, Julius Kenyamanyara and Nick Charlemagne in registering a 3-1 win.

"We decided to try five in the back, similar to what the Dutch team and Chile are doing currently in the World Cup," noted Athletic coach Andy Veilleux. "You play with three centrebacks and two wingbacks, to go on the attack."

"You always have your three centerbacks in the middle of the field." With Marcantognini lighting it up in league play, a strategy to try and limit his effectiveness surprised no one who follows the SRCSL (Sudbury Regional Competitive Soccer League).

"We know what to expect from him," said Veilleux. "He still got some shots away, but nothing too dangerous." Ironically, Voima dodged a couple of bullets en route to the championship affair, going to penalty kicks in eliminating both Croatia Adria and Sudbury United.

While it would seem that the "five-back formation" would inherantly sacrifice offense in order to provide a defensive wall, Veilleux suggested that the ability to counter with speed from the wingbacks does provide the opportunity to attack more than one might expect.

"We're thankful to have Brandon Paquette and Rod Boucher on the wings," said Veilleux. "They have great engines and can run all game. They give us a lot of width." With Sudbury Athletic Voima missing some bodies on Thursday, the Flyers earned a measure of revenge in league play, trouncing the Cup winners 7-1.

Marcantognini was back on the mark, scoring four times, with Travis Perrin adding a pair and Thomas Peterson rounding out the scoring for the winners. Kevin Jeanveau countered in a losing cause for Athletic.

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Recreational Game of the Week - Valley East Soccer Club:

The U18 girls division has been, according to league sources, one of the most competitive in recent history within the VESC. Even the absence of bodies, across the board, did not change that last Thursday at the Howard Armstrong Sports Complex.

With both Toppers Pizza and Remax Crown (Hélène Charette) limited to seven players apiece for a variety of reasons, the extra room on the pitch did not result in a whole lot of additional quality scoring chances, with the teams playing to a 1-1 draw.

The contest remained scoreless late into the first half when former GSSC Impact defender Chloe Coulombe broke the ice for Toppers. "I was on defense," stated Coulombe after the game. "I went up and passed it to Regan (Scarrow), who was in the center of the field."

"She passed it back to me and I got by two defenders to put it in the net." Seconds later, the contest was nearly evened with Marissa Lemega showcasing a lovely rush of her own before missing wide.

That earned Toppers only a temporary reprieve, as Remax countered minutes later off a corner kick. Sarah Smith sailed a bounced shot into the box, which Lemega alertly redirected off the side of her foot, sending the ball into the far corner.

There would be no scoring through the second forty minute half, with Lemega enjoying the best chance courtesy of a pass from Caroline Pellerin. Though Coulombe is thankful for a return to the more relaxed environment of recreational soccer, she still finds herself offering some words of wisdom courtesy of six years of competitive soccer training.

"I played defense a lot when I was competitive, that was my main thing," she said. "Lately, I've been playing forward here, so I don't have that much to say up there. But when I'm playing defense, I can remind them to jockey with Marissa, because she's very good."

"Just stay in front of her." With a clear-cut competitive streak in her nature, Coulombe is the first to admit that trying to strike the proper balance, in this particular setting, can prove challenging.

"Sometimes, I wonder if it shows that I get frustrated," she stated. "I have to remind myself that that is houseleague, and that's why I came back here, just to have fun. I really do enjoy this league, because there is no stress at all."

"But I think, next year, I will be going back to competitive, just for the fact that I miss my team," Coulombe added. Following is a brief rundown of some of the other action from VESC games played last Thursday:

U12 Girls
Gold 2 (Jenna Lachance, Mackenzie Belec)
Neelon Ltd 1 (Pascale Bedard)

U18 Girls
Damisona Roofing 4 (Kylie Pretty-2, Sierra Aubertin-McNabb, Renée-Claude Pilon)
Northern Sports Photography 2 (Aryana Paparo, Samantha Menard)

GAME ON:
At Home: Impact U15-B vs Barrie Spirit - Sat., July 5th - 3:00 p.m. at James Jerome turf; vs Ajax FC Black - Sun., July 6th - 1:00 p.m. at James Jerome grass

At Home: Impact U16-G (Select) vs North Bay - Sat., July 5th - 1:00 p.m. at Delki Dozzi Sports Complex

At Home: Sudbury Canadians vs St Catherines Jets - Sat., July 5th - 2:00 p.m. at James Jerome grass

At Home: Impact U13-B vs Ajax FC White - Sat., July 5th - 3:00 p.m. at Delki Dozzi Sports Complex

On the Road - Impact U21-G @ Barrie Spirit (July 5th/6th); @ Burlington Bayhawks - OWSL Cup game (July 6th)

On the Road - Impact U21-B @ Barrie Spirit (July 5th); @ Woodbridge Strikers (July 6th)

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If you are interested in seeing each and every edition of the Sudbury Soccer Snapshot, as they are uploaded to SudburySports.com, simply forward your email details to the attention of Randy Pascal at "statsman@sudburysports.com"

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