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Varsity sports roundup: Soccer Bears and Pandas with undefeated weekends

Bears Soccer

The Bears soccer team stayed hot over the weekend, securing a 3-0 win against their cross-town rivals, the MacEwan Griffins at Jasper Place field on Saturday. The scoring started early, as rookie Niko Cuglietta scored in the 17th minute to give the Bears an early advantage. The away team controlled the play for the majority of the game, as the Bears fired 18 shots, with 11 reaching the target, while the Griffins only had four, with Bears keeper Connor James only having to make two saves the entire match. Tolu Esan and Shamit Shome also scored in the match, bringing both of their season goal totals to six so far this year – a figure that has them tied for second in the league. The Bears will look to keep the momentum rolling as they face the Calgary Dinos and Mount Royal Cougars this upcoming weekend. – Zach Borutski

Pandas Soccer

After a slow start, the Pandas soccer teams appears to be rounding into form heading into the final four games of the season. They extended their winning streak to four games this past weekend, posting a pair of shutout wins over the University of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves – a 4-0 win on Saturday, and a 1-0 win on Sunday. Kristen Livingstone scored a hat trick in the 4-0 victory, with Julia Ignacio adding a goal for good measure. The Sunday game was a more closely contested affair, with fifth year forward Jesse Candlish netting the only goal of the match, off a rebound from the Timberwolves’ keeper. The Pandas now sit above the .500 mark for the first time since the season’s opening week, and will look to continue their strong play and make a push for a playoff spot with matchups against the Saskatchewan Huskies and Regina Cougars this weekend. – Zach Borutski

Bears Football

After the Thanksgiving bye week, the Bears football team gets back at it this weekend, with a rematch against the UBC Thunderbirds, who won their last meeting 39-21. After starting the season 2-0, the Bears have faced struggles on both defence and offence, suffering from the inability to stop other teams from scoring, and also failing to put up points in key situations. During their losing streak, the Bears have failed to hold the opposition under 30 points, including giving up a CIS record 80 points to the Calgary Dinos in week three. The Bears will certainly have an easier time winning if they can contain Thunderbirds’ quarterback Michael O’Connor, who threw for 203 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s meeting. The Bears are currently in a tie for third in Canada West with the Saskatchewan Huskies, while the Thunderbirds are tied for second with the Manitoba Bisons, meaning this rematch will have major playoff implications for both teams. – Zach Borutski 

Pandas Hockey

The Pandas had an lacklustre weekend overall, dropping both of their games to the Lethbridge Pronghorns — losing 3-2 on Friday night, and 3-1 on Saturday afternoon in their first home games of the season. The Pronghorns relied on strong goaltending during the two games, as rookie Alicia Anderson stopped 38 of 40 shots in the first game, and 24 of 25 shots in the second game. During the first game, the Pandas found themselves down 2-1 heading into the third period, despite outshooting the ‘Horns 26-12 to that point. Alison Campbell was able to find the net to tie the game early in the third, but the Pronghorns were able to pull ahead just 44 second later, and would hold on to win. The Pandas didn’t come out with the same intensity in the second game, surrendering the lead in the first, and being unable to reclaim it the rest of the game. The Pandas will look to rebound from this uncharacteristic hiccup with two more home games this weekend against the Regina Cougars.

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