Revenge is a dish served best indoors.
The 2018 outdoor soccer season had a bitter ending for the Brandon Bobcats, falling 1-0 to the CMU Blazers in the final.
The indoor season, however, would not end in the same way.
The Bobcats capped off an undefeated season Sunday afternoon, beating the Blazers 2-0 at Red River College for their first MCAC futsal title.
“I think it’s more than just the season, to be fair,” said Bobcats head coach Jesse Roziere “In the last couple of years, these guys made a lot of changes in what they do off the field so they see improvements on the field and I think that’s been shown three finals in a row now.”
The three finals he is referring to include last year’s futsal finals, the 2018 outdoor season, and the victories 2019 futsal title.
“We know they have very good players, good team and good coaches,” Roziere continued. “In the outdoor season they surprised us with how they completely sat back.”
The first half was played to a tight 0-0 draw. And the second half was dominated by Bobcats’ goalkeeper Dan Harrison, who pulled off several mind-bending saves on route to being named Finals MVP.
“He was Dan. Not much else to say,” laughed Roziere. “This was his first season where he wasn’t all-conference so maybe he had a big chip on his shoulder.”
“I feel like we all deserve it to be honest,” Harrison said about receiving MVP honours. “I feel great. Most of (the game) is a blur, it feels great. My hands are sore, so I must’ve saved some shots.”
The Bobcats finally broke the deadlock with a penalty in the second half. The Blazers’ Will Anderson pushed down Kevin Lopez in the penalty area, and Diego Rodriguez buried the spot kick to give the Bobcats a 1-0 lead.
“Their counter attack is lethal, and their set plays, corners, inbounds are very lethal as well,” Harrison said about the challenges CMU posed. “They’ve proven that all year and those were the main concerns for us.”
The second half heated up quickly, with Blazers’ forward Matheus Moreno skipping through the entire Bobcats’ defense, only to see his effort go off the crossbar.
CMU missed another golden opportunity, with Paul Odedina’s backheel finding a wide-open Will Anderson. Anderson’s effort went just wide.
After Rodriguez’s penalty, the Blazers continued to push up and attack and frequently pulled goalkeeper Robbie Friesen to add a second attacker.
The nail in the coffin was scored by Kevin Lopez with just one-minute left.