X-Men nip Tigers 2-1 in exhibition play

Photo credit Bryan Kennedy
Photo credit Bryan Kennedy

Guysborough, NS - The StFX X-Men emerged victorious 2-1 over the Dalhousie Tigers in an intense 90 minutes of pre-season exhibition action Saturday afternoon at Chedabucto Lifestyle Complex. 

In the early minutes the X-Men had the Tigers pinned deep in their own end. StFX's Dan Hayfield delivered three corner kicks, but DAL's defence held firm. StFX's electric William Warren had the game's first great chance and forced and excellent save from Tiger's Ben Grondin. 

Dalhouise were not long in responding, with the veteran Enrico Rodriquez firing the first of his many good shots on target. The game was a full-blooded affair with many hard challenges and good shoulder charges. About half-way through the opening frame, StFX's Lewis Dye and DAL's Freddie Bekkers went into the air and clashed heads. Both players went down heavily and were forced to the sidelines. 

To go along with the physicality were touches of brilliance by both teams. Warren controlled the ball expertly as he glided down the field and fired a nice shot past the DAL keeper, getting the X-Men on the board with a 1-0 lead. Tane Cabo almost doubled their lead but was denied by the post.

The second half continued in much the same vein as the first half. There was good play by both sides and precision strikes that led to solid scoring chances by both sides, the majority of which went to StFX. 

However, when Bekkers rejoined the play not long into the second half for the Tigers he immediately impacted proceedings. StFX were awarded a corner kick and it was Bekkers, who was perfectly positioned for a clearing header. In the 67th minute he had a fine first touch before he played a nice ball down the wing for Rodriguez, who showed great accuracy and power as he fired in the equalizer. 

X-Men freshman Logan Harrington led the drive for the winner and struck a number of good balls throughout the half. As the half wound down the Tigers were unable to clear the ball and it was the assured StFX veteran striker, Ben Herringer, who fired the winning goal from inside the six-yard box. 

Dalhousie would be given one last chance for the draw from a last-minute corner kick, but it was X left back Sam Charron to the rescue as he cleared the ball to help the X-Men secure the 2-1 victory.

The game marks the end of pre-season exhibition play for the X-Men (3-0-0) as they are set to begin AUS regular season play on Friday, September 6th. They will host the UPEI Panthers at 7:15 pm at StFX Stadium.


Courtesy Bart Sears, StFX Sports Information