Midfielder Dylan James explained how the Redbirds’ and Excalibur’s history against one another factors into their pregame approach.
“We took [Trent] very seriously,” James told The Tribune. “We’re focused and dialled in, and very mindful of the fact that they’re a good team.”
The Redbirds started the game off strong with midfielder Samuel MacDonald winning the opening faceoff and James giving McGill a 1-0 lead in the first minute of play with an assist from attacker and team captain Isaiah Cree. However, this advantage was short-lived as Trent tied the game six minutes in and scored again just two minutes later. The Excalibur continued to apply pressure, scoring yet another goal for a 3-1 lead. In the last minute of the first quarter, James scored his second of the game, bringing McGill back within one goal.
With nine minutes left in the second quarter, Trent netted another goal, but two minutes later
midfielder Joshua Jewell scored with an assist from James. Midfielder Alexander Erbstein carried on the momentum, scoring another goal for McGill with five minutes left in the quarter, before Trent scored two more goals in the last minute of play, bringing the score up to 6-4 at the half.
James scored once again at the top of the third quarter, closing the teams’ two-goal gap and bringing the score to 6-5. However, Trent quickly shut down McGill’s attempt at a comeback, scoring again to close out the third quarter 7-5.
Cree explained that the biggest challenge they had was matching Trent’s speed.
“They’re a fast team,” Cree remarked after the game. “I feel like once we match feet a little bit more and just play our game, we’ll be fine.”
In the fourth quarter James had yet another assist on a goal by midfielder Rowan Birrell that upped the score to 7-6. With Trent scoring another goal, James fought hard to come back, receiving an assist from Birrell in the last few seconds of the eighth minute. Trent went on to score two more goals before midfielder John Miraglia secured the final goal for the Redbirds. Trent ultimately won 10-8.
Moving forward, James believes that the key to success rests in being more disciplined and making fewer mental errors.
“We have it in us and we know we have it in us,” said James. “Going into the game we knew that we could push more. It was just a lack of execution from that regard.”
Despite the difficult loss, head coach Nicolas Soubry was proud of the team’s offensive performance.
“I thought our offence played the best they’ve played all year,” Soubry told The Tribune. “It was one of those days where you’re just like, they could do whatever they want on defence, we’re going to score goals, so we just had to work better at getting them those opportunities.”
The Redbirds will play next against the Queen’s University’s Gaels (2–1) on Sept. 30, for the Legacy Game.
Moment of the game: Despite being down by three, Miraglia stayed motivated, scoring the final goal of the game with just under two minutes remaining to make the final 10-8 and give the Redbirds momentum heading into their next matchup.
“We have grit, we aren’t going to give up. We went down for a few getting close to the end and we still put one [goal] in ready to close with two minutes left so it shows that we will fight to the end no matter what. I feel like that’s what’s most important. We’re not going to turn over and let this game get out of hand. We will always fight.”
– Attacker, Isaiah Cree
Stat Corner: Midfielder and faceoff specialist Samuel MacDonald won every single faceoff of the game.