Gavin Blunt

General Amherst ousted by Kennedy in chaotic soccer playoff game

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs boys soccer team have been eliminated from the WECSSAA “AA” soccer playoffs by the Kennedy Clippers in a game that left a bad taste in the Bulldogs’ mouths.

By the time last Thursday afternoon’s game at the Libro Centre ended, both goalies had been ejected, parents had come onto the field and others ejected, and a dispute over how much time was thought to be left on the clock when the referee blew the final whistle.

General Amherst’s Aaron Brush kicks the ball up the field during last Thursday against Kennedy. Amherst lost 2-1 in the WECSSAA “AA” playoff game.

General Amherst’s Aaron Brush kicks the ball up the field during last Thursday against Kennedy. Amherst lost 2-1 in the WECSSAA “AA” playoff game.

General Amherst coach Gavin Blunt said he didn’t want blame the officiating for the loss but wanted to focus on his own team’s effort.

“I thought we played a hard fought game and we ended up with some tough calls against us,” said Blunt, after the 2-1 loss.

Blunt said there were points where he felt the Bulldogs outplayed Kennedy but couldn’t convert their chances.

“It was a very tough game to coach. It was a tough battle,” said Blunt. “The boys played well.”

Kieron Sweet scored the lone goal for the Bulldogs.

Assistant coach Spencer Petrozzi also said he didn’t want to concentrate on the officiating, and agreed that the Bulldogs played well despite the final score.

“The boys played hard. They battled right to the end,” said Petrozzi. “We’re very proud of the boys. They battled.”

General Amherst's Brock Beaudoin (left) wins a race to the ball but the Bulldogs lost the game 2-1 to Kennedy.

General Amherst’s Brock Beaudoin (left) wins a race to the ball but the Bulldogs lost the game 2-1 to Kennedy.

All of the players are eligible to return next season and they hope the 2018 season will be better. Blunt said the 2017 season was still a good one.

“It was a great season,” he added. “It was an unfortunate way to end an undefeated season in a game like this. It was chaotic and unorganized. There were scrums at times.”

Blunt noted “we played a really good team” and Petrozzi also noted the Bulldogs had their chances.

Bulldogs hit the road for a pair of boys soccer games

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs finished the regular season on the road over the past week.

The first game was Wednesday afternoon at the University of Windsor’s Alumni Field against the Assumption Purple Raiders. Amherst started slow and improved as the game went on but had to settle for a 0-0 tie.

The tie snapped a four-game winning streak for the Bulldogs.

Donald LaChance heads the ball upfield during WECSSAA boys soccer action last Wednesday. General Amherst tied Assumption 0-0.

Donald LaChance heads the ball upfield during WECSSAA boys soccer action last Wednesday. General Amherst tied Assumption 0-0.

Both teams had to contend with poor weather at points, with pouring rain and a lightning delay arising at different moments in the game.

Head coach Gavin Blunt pointed out that the scoreless tie was “not the ideal result” and pointed out they didn’t have a good first half.

“We were looking to win,” said Blunt. “We played down to their level in the first half. In the second half, the boys played well. The boys started running.”

“We got caught watching the ball early on,” added assistant coach

Blunt said the Bulldogs had their chances in the second half.

General Amherst's Michael Nasello sprints towards a loose ball during second half action against Assumpton April 19.

General Amherst’s Michael Nasello (right, yellow jersey) sprints towards a loose ball during second half action against Assumpton April 19.

“We definitely outshot them and out-chanced them,” he said. “We didn’t get the bounces.”

The game was called with about three minutes to play. The referee blew play dead for the second time due to lightning and after a huddle with coaches from both teams, the game ended though some on the Bulldogs wanted to have another 30-minute delay and finish the game.

“In my mind, I still think we’re the best team in the tier,” Blunt said after Wednesday’s game.

The Bulldogs concluded the regular season Monday afternoon with a 6-1 win at Belle River. The win meant General Amherst finished the 2017 WECESSAA Tier 2 regular season with a 5-0-1 record.

 

Bulldogs improve to 4-0 on the WECSSAA Tier 2 boys soccer season

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Another win, another shutout for the General Amherst boys soccer team.

The Bulldogs won 4-0 last Wednesday afternoon at the Libro Centre to stay undefeated on the 2017 season. Their record is also 4-0.

Cole Chittle tries to fight off a Herman player during first half action during a 4-0 Amherst win. The Bulldogs have won their first four games of the regular season.

Cole Chittle tries to fight off a Herman player during first half action during a 4-0 Amherst win. The Bulldogs have won their first four games of the regular season.

Brock Beaudoin, Michael Nasello, Aaron Brush and Christian Sweet scored Wednesday against Herman with Griffin Muzzin picking up his third shutout of the year.

“I think the boys played well,” said Nasello. “It was nice to get the 4-0 win.”

Nasello said they entered the season thinking it would be a developmental year but the team is meshing together well so far.

“The team is stepping up. Everyone is doing their part. Everyone is doing an equal share. Everyone is playing well,” said Nasello.

Coach Gavin Blunt pointed out it was their final home game of the regular season, and the Bulldogs were undefeated at home.

General Amherst’s Michael Nasello heads up the field for a scoring chance during his team’s 4-0 victory over Herman last Wednesday afternoon at the Libro Centre.

General Amherst’s Michael Nasello heads up the field for a scoring chance during his team’s 4-0 victory over Herman last Wednesday afternoon at the Libro Centre.

“I thought we played a flawless game,” said Blunt.

“The boys are playing well, they are playing smart,” added assistant coach Spencer Petrozzi.

The team has scored 12 goals through its first four games and only allowed one, with none in the last three.

“We hope to end on a strong note,” added Blunt. “Everyone is clicking right now.”

Nasello is playing well, he added, as is Nate Salvati. Salvati is one of the Bulldogs’ main defenders and a big reason the team has three straight shutouts.

“He’s our rock back there,” said Blunt.

General Amherst plays today (Wednesday) at the University of Windsor’s Alumni Field against Assumption and concludes the regular season in Belle River next Monday. Both games are at 4 p.m.

Bulldogs start WECSSAA soccer season on a good note

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

It has been a positive start for the General Amherst Bulldogs senior boys soccer team.

The Bulldogs opened the season last Tuesday with a 2-1 victory over the Leamington Lions. General Amherst got goals from Kieron Sweet and Connor Pike in that win. Two days later, the Sandwich Sabres came to the Libro Centre with the Bulldogs winning 2-0.

General Amherst’s Michael Nasello (left) battles for a ball with a Sandwich player during Thursday afternoon’s WECSSAA Tier 2 boys soccer game at the Libro Centre. The Bulldogs won 2-0.

General Amherst’s Michael Nasello (left) battles for a ball with a Sandwich player during Thursday afternoon’s WECSSAA Tier 2 boys soccer game at the Libro Centre. The Bulldogs won 2-0.

The latter game saw Cole Zelle and Michael Nasello score for the Bulldogs with Griffin Muzzin picking up the shutout in goal. Thursday’s game was played in difficult weather conditions with cold winds, rain and sleet having to be endured by players, coaches, referees and fans alike.

“We started off the way we wanted to start off,” said coach Gavin Blunt, after Thursday’s game.

The team is young this season, with a number of Grade 12 players last year graduating. The players are all Grade 11 and younger this year, he said.

“We don’t have one Grade 12 player,” said Blunt.

Despite that, they have a number of returning players from last year.

“They are young but they are experienced,” he said.

The team has been capitalizing on its chances so far this season and playing solid defensively. They are showing good internal leadership, said Blunt, and thus far the results have been good.

“We have a good core group of kids from last year,” he said.

General Amherst’s Brock Beaudoin goes up to head a ball against Sandwich last Thursday afternoon. At right is Amherst’s Aaron Brush (6). General Amherst won 2-0 on a cold, wet day at the Libro Centre.

General Amherst’s Brock Beaudoin goes up to head a ball against Sandwich last Thursday afternoon. At right is Amherst’s Aaron Brush (6). General Amherst won 2-0 on a cold, wet day at the Libro Centre.

The coaches didn’t expect to have as strong of a team as they appear to have but some of the players’ talents have been coming out since the first practice. He said expectations weren’t as high when practice began but players have been showing “hidden potential” as the season moves along.

“We’re still going to try and go as far as we can and make a deep run in the playoffs,” said Blunt.

General Amherst improved to 3-0 on the 2017 season with a 4-0 win over Lajeunesse Monday afternoon at home. Michael Nasello scored three times and Kieron Sweet scored the other.

The Bulldogs’ next game is Wednesday at 4 p.m. at the Libro Centre against the Herman Green Griffins.