This week’s Flashback Friday goes to the 2005-06 men's soccer team.
Front Row (L-R): Chris O’Connor, Matt Hudson, Simon Richardson, Pat Nearing (Head Coach), Jorge Aguire, Jarreau Hayward, Mike Beazley Middle Row (L-R): Ryan Haughn, Mike Walker, John Ballantyne, Alan Dalton, Jon Robbins, Jonathan Merrette, Dan Adelman, Joe Nearing (Manager) Back Row (L-R): Fraser MacDougall, Dennis Byrne, Izaak Lawrence, Geoff Plant, Tomas Hofmann, Remi Veilleux, Hamzeh Afani, Jeff Hoyle (Trainer)
With a strong rookie class consisting of five defenders and two transfers, the men’s soccer team had put an emphasis on strong defence in the offseason. Along with two new strikers the Tigers were set to make their mark on the AUS.
As the season progressed it was evident that the commitment to a better defence was paying off. In 11 AUS league games the Tigers conceded nine goals and all seven of their league wins were shutouts. The Tigers record of 7-3-1 would get them the third seed in the AUS playoffs and have them face off against the UNB Varsity Reds in the first round.
In the quarter-final, the team continued it’s winning formula of good goal keeping and solid defence, blanking the Varsity Reds 2-0. With the quarter-final win, the Tigers moved on to face UPEI, a team that had beaten Dal once already that season.
On the back of superb goal keeper play of Chris O’ Connor, the Tigers yet again got a shutout victory this time beating UPEI 3-0. With two wins in hand the Tigers reached the AUS championship game where they were to face off against the best regular season team, the Saint Mary’s Huskies.
In the AUS Championship game unfortunately Dal could not sustain their success as they fell to Saint Mary’s and had to settle for second in the conference.
While the season did not end as they wanted, team captain Simon Richardson was named an AUS First Team All-Star with teammates Jarreau Hayward and Jon Robbins collecting second team honours.