ANTIGONISH, NS - The STFX X-Men made the most of a free kick in the first half and held on for a 1-0 win over the Moncton Aigles Bleus on Saturday afternoon in the AUS season opener at STFX Stadium.
STFX dominated territory and possession early but weren't able to generate much in the way of quality scoring chances, thanks to strong play from the Moncton backline.
Moncton's Robert Kamano (Moncton, NB) had a big opportunity for the visitors, pouncing on a long ball mid-way through the half but the shot went just over the net. Cameron Shaw (Ottawa, ON) drove a hard volley at the Moncton net a few minutes later, forcing Matteo Blanc (Flavin, France) to make a diving save.
In the 35th minute, Logan Rieck (Cambridge, ON) put the home team on the scoreboard, driving home a bar down free kick from the top of the 18-yard box.
Jonathan Kisse (Toronto, ON) tried to find an equalizer for the Aigles Bleus a few minutes later but his shot curled just wide of the far post.
Rieck almost had another a few minutes into the second half after a scramble in front of the Moncton net but the shot was deflected wide. Shaw followed up with a volley from close in about a minute later, but the ball went high over the net.
STFX maintained their possession dominance in the second half, leaving little in the way of chances for Moncton. Phillippe Gallant (Bathurst, NB) gave it a go though with a heavy shot from the top of the 18 that came close to tying the game for the visitors, but it went just wide.
The Aigles Bleus picked up the pressure late in the match hoping to draw even but the STFX backline held firm and William Veinot (Bedford, NS) earned the clean sheet in the X net.
STFX defender Luke Green (Fall River, NS) was named player of the game for the home side while Lionel Feval (Riviere Salee, Martinique) was player of the game for Moncton.
After the game, Green said his team came into the game confident and were looking for the shut out.
"Today we were lucky enough to nick one because of Logan Rieck's magic, so I couldn't be happier to start the season with three points," said Green. "We kept our core team from last year with some really good additions, so I felt like we didn't need any time during preseason (to gel). This group is family and we showed it on the pitch."
The X-Men net hit the pitch again tomorrow as they host the UNB Reds at 3:15 pm, while Moncton heads to CBU to face the Capers, also on Sunday.
Recap courtesy Matt Draper, STFX Athletics