Men's soccer finishes regular season with draw; playoff bound

Dan Khavkin, Cougar Athletics 

CALGARY- Second place Saskatchewan travelled to Cougar Stadium Field for a face-off against Mount Royal Sunday afternoon in a 1-1 game.

Last time these two saw each other it was the Cougars who pulled away with three points on the road. 

MRU was placed fourth in the league standings heading into the contest, trying to make up for the points dropped the day prior against Lethbridge.

University of Calgary Dinos did their part and beat the Huskies on Saturday, MRU was looking to close the gap on their cross-town rivals.

The first half saw both teams holding to the ball in an attempt to draw the other out and penetrate using open space. However, neither team found any real chances driving down the middle.

As a result, both teams resorted to driving down the touchline and send in balls to the middle of the box.

Cougar keeper Kyran Valley had the moment of the half, recovering from punching away a cross from his net and parrying the ball volleyed by Huskies' Aiden Taylor on the one time.

Valley forced himself to spring off the ground and leap up to punch the ball on the second shot on target and tipping the ball over the net.

 Both teams took a 0-0 score into the break.

Controversy played into the game in the 56th minute when the visiting Huskies got on the board first.

Tobias Hyrich-Krueger found the back of the net of a rebound but the linesman threw his flag up in the air to waive the goal off a little later than usual.

The Cougars eleven rejoiced originally, but the moment after Valley restarted play the referee awarded the goal against to the Huskies pleasure and MRU's dismay.

Bells started ringing on the Cougars end who knew they needed a response and quick because dropping points wasn't an option let alone not picking up any at all.

In his final home game wearing a Cougars shirt, captain and centre-half Jeff Blake banged a pass from Orest Ndabaneze inside the Huskie box and past Austrian-born keeper Patrick Pranger at the 61st-minute mark.

MRU had the momentum throughout the half but could not do more than they did. 

MRU have two games left in an open weekend rematch against bottom MacEwen and top of the table Alberta next weekend to close their campaign out in the looks for a playoff spot.

Saskatchewan closed their season out with a 7-5-2 record; good for second place in the Prairie Division and now await playoffs.