November 25, 2004

Hello, I’ve just had another mixed couple of weeks. Last weekend we won the regional tournament held here at Riddle. It all started last Friday night (11/12) when we beat St. Thomas 3-0 in the semi-final and then we went on to beat Northwood in the finals on Saturday. This victory was sweetened by the fact that they were the only team to beat us in the conference during the season; and sweetened further more because they are the only team in the Conference without any sportsmanship what so ever. In the three games we played against them throughout the season, they had a man sent off in every game, including three sent off in the final.

So it was off to Kansas for Nationals, Olathe, to be more exact. It has never been one of my life long dreams to go to Kansas, and I found out why this week. It is in the middle of nowhere, it is freezing, and more importantly it is very boring. I hope I am not offending anyone, that’s not my intention. But if you are from Olathe, I am sure that you are aware of this already. And if you aren’t, you are kidding no one but yourself. I suppose that this is not a bad place to hold the national finals as there are sure to be no distractions for the athletes as the night life in Kansas seems to be non- existent, as well as any sort of crowd at the games. I think I am just bitter because I am back so soon. And the reason that I am back so soon is because we got beat in our first game. I won’t bore you with the in’s and out’s of the game but I will give you a brief outline of how our season came to an abrupt end on Wednesday.

We started off brightly, and were in a commanding position at the half time interval, yet the score board did not reflect this fact, as it was still 0-0. When we came out for the second half, we conceded an early goal just 5 minutes after the break. A bad decision by the referee, but I am getting used to bad referees over here as it is the norm. Then, deservedly so, we equalized with about twenty minutes to go and were in the ascendancy, and I felt we would go on to win the game from here. But football being the cruel game it is, it wasn’t to be. We conceded a goal, not for the first time, with a mere 10 minutes to go. We did not stop battling right up until the last whistle, all in vain none the less, and just like that our season was ended. A hard one to swallow, purely because of the fact that they were not a good side by any stretch of the imagination, and 9 times out of ten we would have beaten them. Knock out tournaments are funny like that.

Anyway, still tired from a long days traveling yesterday, I had my first day back in class today. The disappointment of losing was worsened when I was informed of how much work I have to catch up on for Monday. Overall it has not been a bad season, I mean we won the conference pretty comfortably and we came through the Regional as well. You cannot rest on your laurels, and I think that we have established ourselves as a very good team over the past few seasons. I say this because of the reputation that I heard about before I came here, but I think that next season we will take that next step and win a national title. It would be great to win it next year, especially as they are going to be held at Riddle next year.

It is going to be a grim month now without any football. I have finals to look forward, but then it is home for Christmas, thank God. To finish this entry I would like to wish our seniors the best of luck with whatever they decide to do and say thanks to them for a good season. They are a good bunch of lads, Justin Crawford (JCA), Phil Murray (Muz), Clifton Phillips W, and last, but definitely not least, Christian (In The Lead) Masson.

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About Hugh

**Age:** 20 **Hometown:** N. Ireland **Favorite Movie:** The Goonies **Favorite Band:** Red Hot Chili Peppers **Career Goal:** Win a national soccer championship and get my degree.

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