The Grand Rapids Community College Men’s Soccer team looked to continue their dominance against conference opponent Marion University-Ancilla on Tuesday, Aug. 29. Led by freshman goalkeeper Brett Miller, the Raiders coasted their way to a 7-0 victory.
Although the game got slightly chippy at times, GRCC head coach Damiekco Smith was pleased with how the team answered the adversity.
“I thought they played well, they played like a team in the way they play together so frequently,” Smith said. “The biggest thing is knowing when to be humble and to know your position. Sometimes you’ll be on the bench, sometimes you’ll be scoring goals, but as long as guys know their role then we will be successful.”
Similar to previous games, the Raiders jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first half, as freshman striker Mohamed Tamour scored the first goal assisted by freshman winger Lucas Freriks, while freshman striker Hani Alturkmani scored shortly after with an assist from multiple Raiders.
GRCC maintained the two goal lead heading into halftime and continued to add to it from that point on.
A few minutes after halftime, freshman striker Chibambo Munguakonkwa scored via a pass from Tamour. Tempers started to flare right after the goal as disagreements on a call had the Raiders hot-headed. However, Freriks responded immediately as he scored two goals within a minute of each other to push the lead to 5-0.
The Raiders completed the potent victory, winning 7-0 after Tamour notched a hat-trick after scoring the final goal of the game.
Along with Tamour’s impressive performance, Miller and the defense deserve plenty of credit as well. The defense only gave up three shots in the entirety, including a miraculous save by Miller in the second half.
“My backline is a huge reason why I’ve had so much success this season,” Miller said. “We all have a lot of faith in each other and with faith comes trust which has allowed us to be locked in.”
GRCC ended up with 34 shots on goal throughout the game along with four corner-kick opportunities.
“It feels good to get everybody in, especially when they are trying to get used to the college game,” Smith said. “Parents want to see their kids play and there might be times where you might not get to play but I am the type of coach that if players work hard, then they need to see the field. I was able to play everybody today so that felt good.”
With the victory, GRCC improves to 3-0 in both conference and regular season play. However, the Raiders have their biggest test of the year in their next game and are embracing the “chase the throne” mentality
“When you put the title, it’s bend the knee, and our (team’s) theme is game of thrones , we’re coming for the throne,” Smith said. “Schoolcraft has the throne, and our job is to go in there and try to make every team bend the knee, including Schoolcraft. When we play them we’re going to be competitive and we are coming for the throne.”
In a highly anticipated matchup, GRCC faces the No.9 overall team in the Division II National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) rankings, Schoolcraft College, on Friday, Sept. 1, at MacKay-Jaycees Park at 3 p.m.