TORONTO - The Ryerson Rams lost the battle of Toronto for the second time this season, as the University of Toronto Varsity Blues won 5-0 on Sunday afternoon at Varsity Stadium.
The Rams [1-12-1] could not halt the Blues [8-3-2] offence, which struck early and often, utilizing set plays. LaShaunna Harper led the way for Toronto, with two goals (20th and 38th minutes), while Mel Bowen (3rd), Olivia Gonsalves (44th) and Diana Esteireiro (84th) each had one. Crowding the net, the Blues scored three first half goals off of five corner kicks and scored on a free kick in the second half.
“It was disappointing from that perspective,” head coach Kevin Souter said. “They put balls right on top of the six (yard box) and we weren’t putting our heads or our bodies on it. We didn’t fight like it was in our six-yard box. We weren’t willing to get a head or a chin or an ear on the ball.”
After conceding four goals in the first half, the Rams left the field frustrated and disappointed with their performance. Souter let the team know he wasn’t happy and they responded with a tighter second half, but by then, the game was out of reach.
“We came out stronger in the second half,” defender Amy Tahmizian said. “We played more of a possession game, which is what we are good at, rather than just kick and run. Obviously the second half was a better result.”
Goals have been hard to come by for the Rams as they were shut out for the fifth straight game. On Sunday, Ryerson was outshot 15-2 by U of T .
The contest between the downtown rivals was aggressive with both teams playing physical soccer.
Goalkeeper Katrina Persson-Thomas was involved in the day’s worst collision, hitting her head off of a streaking Blues attacker while lunging for the ball. Persson-Thomas was checked out by trainers and after a brief breather on the field, finished the game for Ryerson.
Rookies Alexandra Goudis and Nicole Cemkov saw some increased playing time as Souter plans to give his younger players some more looks and a chance to showcase their skills.
“We’re not in playoff contention so it’s a great opportunity to give our younger players some exposure in this league,” he said.
The Rams close out their season with a pair of home games against Laurentian and Nipissing next weekend at Birchmount Stadium.