Two goals from Thierry Côté carry Montréal to bronze medal
It’s not the medal that either side wanted to be playing for, but the Montréal Carabins and the Cape Breton Capers still had something worth fighting for when they took the field at Hillside Stadium in Kamloops for the 2022 U SPORTS Men’s Soccer Bronze Medal game.
Ultimately, only the Carabins seemed invested in picking up a medal this weekend as they walked over Cape Breton 3-0 for the bronze medal.
Of course, playing in the bronze medal game meant that both sides had suffered losses in the semifinal.
The Carabins took a tough 2-0 loss on Friday to the UBC Thunderbirds, while the Capers were the second team dealt a heartbreaking defeat when they lost in penalty kicks to the Thompson Rivers Wolfpack. The question heading into Sunday was would either side carry the disappointment over and have it affect their performance.
As the bronze medal game kicked off, it was clear from the start that the Capers were not in it. Thierry Côté got things started early for the Carabins as in just the third minute, Nadjib Chemil found Côté wide open in the box, and he buried it past Daniel Clarke to make it 1-0 for the Carabins.
The score held at 1-0 into halftime thanks mainly to timely work from Clarke, who stopped four additional chances in the first half, while the Capers only managed a single shot through the first 45.
In the second half, it was Nadjib Chemil, after picking up the assist in the first half, grabbing the goal in the 54th minute, heading a Zacharie Belamri cross past Clarke whose frustration was clearly evident.
Finally, Côté put the game away a few minutes later, picking his second of the game in the 65th minute to make it 3-0, which Montréal held for the bronze medal.
With visions of winning another gold in Kamloops, it was a disappointing way to end the season for the Cape Breton Capers. They entered the tournament in the number one position but closed it in fourth place without a medal and only a single shot in the bronze medal game.
For the Carabins, the bronze marks their fifth straight medal at the U SPORTS Men’s Soccer Championship. It was not the one they wanted, entering the year as defending champs, but to go along with an RSEQ title, the bronze marks a successful season for the Montréal program.