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Junior Boys Soccer
Last minute goal sinks Louis Riel Rebelle's championship hopes
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Louis Riel's Alex Martel can only watch as his second half shot sails just wide of the John McCrae goal in the NCSSAA junior boys soccer championship on Monday. Fred Sherwin/Photo


Karma finally caught up to the Louis Riel Rebelles junior boys soccer team on Monday. After downing the St. Pius X-Men on a last minute goal in the first round of the playoffs, the Rebelles were the victims of a last minute goal themselves, falling 1-0 to John McCrae in the Tier 1 city championship.

Playing on a neutral field at Ridgemont High School, the Rebelles took the action to John McCrae in the early stages of the first half, producing a number of quality scoring chances. Unfortunately, they were unable to convert any of them into an actual goal.

One of the Rebelles best scoring chances came at the end of the half when a John McCrea defender misplayed a ball near the post and sent it across the open goal mouth. Just as a Louis Riel player was about to get the ball it was kicked clear by the John McCrae keeper.

As one-sided as the play was in the first half, the action was equally lopsided in the second half, only it was John McCrae that was producing the majority of the scoring chances, forcing Rebelles keeper Chad Bush to make several outstanding saves including a leaping palm save in the opening minute.

The Rebelles dodged another bullet two minutes later when John McCrae's Kevin Petrie missed a wide open net from just inside the box off a superbly executed free kick.

Bush was forced to make another spectacular save at the 18 minute mark of the second half when he leapt high in the air to deflect a shot just over the crossbar.

The Rebelles' best chance in the half came in the 24th minute when Souber Ismael made a great cross to Alex Martel who saw his shot sail just wide of the top corner.

John McCrae kept pressing in the latter stages of the game and eventually earned themselves a corner with less than a minute left in regulation. The well-placed kick landed in the middle of the penalty area where it ended up at the feet of Anisal Haque who blasted the ball into the back of the net.

Within seconds of the resumption of play, the referee blew the final whistle and the John McCrae players started celebrating the school's first city championship.

Following the trophy presentation, Rebelles' head coach Jo Fournier tried to put the game in perspective given their good fortune against St. Pius in the quarterfinals.

"I told them that we had good karma in the game against Pius and in this game we had bad karma," said Fournier. "I couldn't really have asked for more from the guys. They played a great game and they stayed positive. We just couldn't score."

(Posted 1:30 p.m., Nov. 4)

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Updated March 182

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