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Road to playoffs tougher for men's soccer Panthers

['UPEI Logo']
['UPEI Logo']

The road to the final six just got a little more difficult as the Memorial Sea-Hawks held the UPEI Panthers to a scoreless 0-0 draw Saturday afternoon at the UPEI turf field.

Both teams are dead even with 13 points, however Memorial has one game in hand with Dalhousie and Acadia one point ahead also with a game in hand. It is painfully obvious that the final week of league play will decide it all.

UPEI came out of the blocks quick and had a couple early chances but couldn’t beat Sea-Hawks keeper Braedan Sheppard. It was the reverse later in the first half as Panther keeper Brett Strba was equal to the task in Memorial’s only two chances of the game. The Panthers had to face a stiff breeze running north to south, however the play was relatively even in the second half with both teams realizing one mistake would probably be the difference between a three or one-point game.

Stats had UPEI leading in shots toward goal at 16 with four on target while the Sea-Hawks had 10 shots towards goal and only two on target. UPEI had the slight edge in chances at 4-2. The Panthers outfouled Memorial 16-11, while Memorial had the edge in corner kicks 8-3. UPEI were off side on five occasions while the Seahawks committed four offside calls.

“I thought it was a pretty even game,” said head coach Lewis Page. “Memorial always come to compete and are always hard to play against. I thought we created enough chances to win the game but our fate is still in our hands so it’s all good.’’

The Panthers have next week to prepare for their final two league games against Acadia (Saturday) and Dalhousie (Sunday). Two wins will clinch a playoff spot, while a loss will make things difficult and could necessitate other teams deciding the Panthers fate.

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