Soccer teams gearing up for Monday clash with Montreal

The York University Lions men’s and women’s soccer teams will see their first action of the 2009-2010 season this weekend as training camps get underway on Saturday. In an effort to remove the off-season rust, the Lions will play their first exhibition games on Monday, Aug. 17, during afternoon matches against the University of Montreal Carabins.

Kickoff for the women’s game is scheduled for 3pm, with the men following at 5:15pm. Both games will be played on Field No. 2 at York’s Keele campus, located just west of York Stadium. Due to the Rogers Cup, parking for these games has been moved to Founders Lot 3V. To access this lot, enter the Keele campus on Founders Road from Steeles Avenue West. The lot is on the east side of Founders Road, just south of Steeles.

Right: Game action during last year’s Canadian Interuniversity Sport semifinal

The men’s team is the one to beat in the Canadian Internuniversity Sport (CIS) this season after winning the national title last year. York’s road to the CIS gold medal went through the Carabins at the 2008 championship tournament as the Lions faced Montreal in the semifinals and recorded a thrilling 1-0 victory. The Carabins should be a good test for the Lions early in the season as they are perennial CIS contenders, reaching the national championship the past six years and picking up three bronze medals in that time.

The Lions women’s team is hoping to get back on track this season after an Ontario University Athletics quarter-final loss last year knocked them out of the playoffs earlier than they would have liked. They too will face strong competition from a Montreal squad that is the reigning CIS bronze medallist.

The contests against Montreal are part of an extensive three-week training camp to get the players ready for the upcoming season. Open tryouts will be held on Saturday, Aug. 15, and Sunday, Aug. 16,  for any York students who are interested in being part of the Lions soccer teams. Other pre-season home games on the schedule include the men against the University of Saskatchewan Huskies on Aug. 22 at 12pm and the women against the Ryerson University Rams on Aug. 29 at 1pm.

The men and women will begin regular season action on Sept. 12 against the Brock University Badgers. Games are scheduled for 2pm for the women and 4:15pm for the men. Both games will take place at York Stadium.