It’s A Montreal-UTQR Final
Les Montreal Carabin 2 – Laval Rouge et Or 1
This game had all the drama that you could want in a game with a last ditch goal to win it all.
The calls of Lohan Lefevre and his teammates echoed all over the mountain last night. In the last moments of the provincial semi-final Friday night at CEPSUM, the French striker broke the deadlock with a 90+ minute goal and sent the Carabins to the RSEQ final on November 4th.
With the final score of 2 to 1, Coach Pat Raimondo’s men confirmed their place at the major Quebec soccer Championship for the fifth season in a row, in addition to eliminating their great rivals from the Université Laval.
The Number 3 Nationally Ranked Carabins, already guaranteed a berth in the U SPORTS National Championship tournament in two weeks by virtue of their first place finish in the regular season standings, will look to earn their fifth consecutive RSEQ banner next Friday when they face the Patriotes de UQTR at CEPSUM.
In a defensive battle that led to a 0-0 stalemate until the 83rd minute, les Carabins were the first to get on the score sheet.
Captain Quentin Paumier, crowned RSEQ player player of the year this season at the start of the evening, intervened in front of an opposing defender to snatch the ball from him. The latter hooked him in the area, causing a penalty shot converted by Thierry Côté.
Not to be outdone, with les Rouge et Or fighting for their playoff lives, battled down to the Montreal end and were awarded a penalty shot for their efforts in the 90th minute on a Montreal player’s handball in the area. The visitors converted to bring both teams back to level..
While the fans in the stands resigned themselves to having to endure the wrath of the cold even longer during extra time, Paumier sent them into a tizzy and rose to the rank of hero by sliding down the flank to send a pass in the feet of Lefevre. The latter slotted it in with his left foot, causing drunken celebration in the stands of the Vincent d’Indy Field.
The final whistle from Referee Yousef Bamsied went a few seconds later and Montreal was off to the final.
UQAM Citadins 1 – UQTR Patriotes 2
Friday evening saw the UQTR Patriotes and the UQAM Citadins placed 2nd and third respectively in the RSEQ standings, so with a chance to get to the USPORTS National Championship on the line with a win in the RSEQ semi-final, this game was not going to disappoint.
After a scoreless first half that saw both teams with their opportunities to go ahead and both keepers having to make saves to keep their respective teams in the game, Coach Shany Black’s Patriotes went up 1-0 in the 63rd minute when Guillaume Pianelli put them ahead.
But not to be outdone, les Citadins nevertheless returned the favor with some relentless pressure of their own scoring an equalizer when Ilyes-Jaden Fradj took a hard shot from just inside of the penalty area and beat the Patriotes’ keeper in the 77th to make it 1-1. The deciding moment came in the midst of confusion just a couple minutes later between two Montreal defenders where Gabriel Balbinotti was allowed to get the ball leaving him with a 1 v 1 with the Citadins goalkeeper. Balbinotti made no mistake and slotted the ball home to give les Patriots a 2-1 advantage in the 80th and a result that would stand to the end with les Patriotes’ defence withstanding any last ditch pressure that the visitors could muster up.
With the win, Les Patriotes have booked their ticket to the USPORTS National Championship in Langley, BC by virtue les Carabins, already guaranteed a berth in the U SPORTS Canadian Championship tournament in two weeks by virtue of their first place finish in the regular season standings. They will look to earn their fifth consecutive banner this Friday (tomorrow) when they face les Patriotes de UQTR at CEPSUM. It is only now do they go as the RSEQ Champion, or as one of the lower seeds.