Bits and Pieces
 

Laurentians vs. Holy Cross On Saturday, June 8 the Laurentians played their opening game of the Provincial Challenge Cup 2002 schedule against their long time rivals, Holy Cross of St. Johnís This game may have created some sort of trivia for the history books. Never, do I recall the Laurentians playing at home and squandering a three-goal lead. The Laurentians blew a 3 - 0, and a 4 - 1 lead and then barely managed to cling on to a 4 - 4 tie. Yes, this was only the first game of the season! Yes, they practically played all 18 players that wore a Laurentians uniform. The fact of the matter is, in ď The Soccer Capital of CanadaĒ this is totally unacceptable. There is a need for our program to begin developing some of the younger players but I guess caution and a keen sense of knowing when to implement substitutes must be recognized.

Albert Anstey

Congratulations are in order to Albert Anstey of Burin, who was recently inducted in to ď The Canadian Darts Hall of FameĒ. In 1997, I was approached by Troy Pickett and Mel Stacey on behalf of the Marystown Soccer Association , to coach the Marystown United in the Provincial Challenge Cup League. My first instinct would be to recruit a winner. Albert Anstey, of Burin became my first contact. I realized that in order to develop a winning team, you need character players. It is quite apparent that Albertís perseverance and ability to become focused has made his contribution to the sport of soccer in Burin a remarkable feat. Obviously, it is these same qualities that he has portrayed in the sport of darts.

Dave Kelly & Keith Senior

Presently both of these Garnish residents are exploring the possibility of setting up a sport "Hall of Fame" for their community. Over the years Garnish did have a relatively strong soccer history and itís great to see itís going to be recognized. It is also my understanding that the St. Lawrence Soccer Association is about to approach and make application with the NLSA to have the provincial soccer "Hall of Fame" to be constructed in St. Lawrence.

Goalies

At present, the Newfoundland & Labrador Challenge Cup soccer schedule is comprised of a grand total of 15 games. With the two-goalie system presently adopted by all clubs participating in this league, thereís no way can a coach do justice to his number one keeper by rotating the two goalies game for game. The coach must identify his number one keeper and play him. Former soccer goal keepers Al Slaney or Rod Drake didnít achieve all - star status by sitting on the bench.
 


Vince Pickett

2001 NLSA "Coach of the Year" and 2001 Sport Newfoundland and Labrador "Coach of the Year" is ,in my opinion, the top coach presently coaching in the provincial Challenge Cup Soccer League. After having seen Marystown upset Holy Cross by a 1 - 0 margin , and defeat Mount Pearl by a 2 - 1 score, I came to the realization that with Coach Pickett behind the bench , anything with regards to winning is possible.Maybe thatís what he proved to himself by stunning the entire province when he coached the Newfoundland Menís Soccer Canada Games Team of 2001 to a National Silver Medal. If hind - sight is correct maybe I was instructed from the best. I have been informed that Johnny. Pickett and Brian Francis may be joining their former coach at a later date. Should both of these players suit up for Marystown , opponents beware.

Richard Kelly

Thereís a funny suspicion Iím getting that some of the powers to be in St. Lawrence are trying to hold Richard Kelly from attaining his potential. This young man, at the age of 20, is the greatest gifted goal scorer on the island. In the Laurentians opening game, with the Laurentians leading at half - time by a score of 3 - 1, Richard was substituted. In the Laurentians second game of the season , during the Laurentians first forty - five minutes, Richard put on a goal - scoring clinic by scoring 3 goals. What does he get for his efforts? Yes, he is again substituted at half time. The Laurentians may get away with this rubbish at a provincial level because of their opponentís level of play, but if the Laurentians are serious about winning a national championship, they will need his goal -scoring ability. In 1999 when I coached Richard and the Laurentians won a National Bronze Medal , this kid at 18 years of age , scored a record - breaking 7 goals at the nationals.

Bob Spearns Retirement

Is Bob Spearns retirement going to hold for the remainder of the 2002 season? Absolutely not! My bet is he is just second guessing himself- he just built a new home with landscaping still not completed; his wife is now having their first child; the Laurentians new coach, although lacking coaching experience, is very demanding. Presently everything appears to have changed for Bob. When the dust settles and Bob absorbs his initial shock and realizes, "Not a lot has actually changed at all", Bob will then telephone his old buddies Paul, Harry & Scott to inform returned Laurentians coach Junior Edwards , "Bob is making a comeback." I feel that Bob Spearns will be in uniform for the St. Lawrence Laurentians on St. Lawrence Day. If not, Iím convinced Bob will be dressed in blue on Labour Day Weekend.

BPSA Schedule

The Burin Peninsula Soccer Association should implement a Burin Peninsula Championship series. How about a two game total goal home and away series? I can see only positives surfacing from the reinstatement of this series. Certainly both the United squad and the Laurentians could benefit by playing an additional two games.

Jimmy Fleming Scenario

I understand that there has been some ongoing discussions taking place between various Laurentians players and Jimmy Flemming about him joining the Laurentians. Over the years , the Laurentians have created a logo that says that we pride ourselves on the three Dís - Desire, Determination & Dedication. From what I have experienced and have witnessed in the last 10 years, Jimmy Flemming doesnít fit this mold. I would be much surprised if Greg Quirke , Junior Edwards or the St. Lawrence Soccer Association isnít aware of this.

World Cup

I have practically watched every televised World Cup 2002 game, whether it was live or on delayed viewing. From what I have gathered, I wouldnít be one bit surprised if another global scandal is unveiled in the sporting world. The referring against Italy, Spain and the United States was bias and blatantly outrageous. So I guess you can see why my prediction of Italy winning the World Cup failed . You can always blame it on the officials.