Forest Hill drops first home game

Season opener was tough loss, but team looks to build on it

Forest Hill Collegiate’s girls soccer team held home field advantage but never held the lead in a high-scoring game against Bloor Collegiate.

In the season opener for both teams, Forest Hill Falcons coach Mihai Sinevici said his young team had some good chances, but weren’t able to capitalize on them.

“First game, to lose 5–2, it was tough,” he said. “I think their girls had more experience than us.”

That experience showed early as Bloor got on the board first with a goal by their captain, Neena Salifu. While the Bears seemed to dominate the ball early on, Forest Hill picked up their play as the first half went on. The Bears first-time keeper, Olivia White, was forced to make a couple saves to maintain her team’s lead but couldn’t get a hand on a shot by Falcons striker Patris Alves who tied the game at a goal a piece.

The Falcons seemed poised to make a run in the second half with their young, deep bench. The Bears had only one sub but seemed to benefit from the halftime break, according to their coach Danielle Buchner.

“At half we just talked about how after they had their little break they needed to go out and get a couple goals right away,” she said. “We knew we were losing momentum because we were tired and we didn’t have subs.”

Bloor showed no signs of slowing down at the start of the half. Forest Hill’s goalie Rachel Seligman was repeatedly tested by the opposing team who showed no fear of running her over for a chance at a goal. After one shot trickled past her, two Bloor players rushed past her to guide the ball into the back of the net but again it was Salifu who got a foot on it.

Another goal by Bloor made the score 3–1, but the Falcons didn’t quit. Alves used her proficient dribbling skills to split through defenders on several occasions before finally getting close enough to kick one past White to close the gap to 3-2.

The close game was short-lived, however. After being tackled in front of Forest Hill’s net, Salifu’s line drive free kick found its way through the legs of Seligman, who later left the game with an injury. Salifu finished the game with three goals.

Despite the loss, Sinevici said he hoped his players wouldn’t get down on themselves. He added they only had two opportunities to practise so far this season and noted they had room and time to improve.

“I’m happy that they’re coming to the games and that they’re having fun,” he said. “It’s going to be tough after 5–2, but hopefully I’m going to raise their morale and their confidence.”

About this article:

By: Tristan Carter
Posted: May 1 2012 7:35 pm
Filed in: Sports
Edition: Toronto