Graeme Meers had a four-goal performance Tuesday afternoon, leading the Samuel Robertson Titans senior boys’ soccer team to a 4-1 win over the top-ranked Archbishop Carney Stars on the road.
The two teams met in the first week of the season last month, with Carney coming away the victor in a 3-0 decision on the Titan’s pitch.
Meers was not in the line-up for that game. However, his presence was hard to ignore on Tuesday.
Titans head coach John Sneddon said it’s the kind of performance he’s come to expect from the talented young forward.
“He’s just an incredible scorer,” he said. “Ever since he was eight years old, he’s had this gift for scoring.”
Meers is the son of former Vancouver 86er Arnie Meers, and will be headed to Scotland this summer for trials with development programs there, including Glasgow Celtics, Sneddon said.
“The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, that’s for sure,” he said.
Meers scored two goals on Carney in the opening 15 minutes of the match before Carney scored off a free kick to draw within one at the half. The second half was all Titans, as Meers scored another pair of goals to put the game out of reach.
However, it wasn’t all positive news on the pitch for Titans on Tuesday as Meers was forced to leave the game after injuring his ankle with 15 minutes to play.
With the Fraser Valley finals looming, Sneddon is hoping his star striker will be able to return in time for the playoffs.
As big of an impact as Meers had on the game, Sneddon said it he wouldn’t have been effective were it not for the hard work of the team’s defence and midfielders.
“He wouldn’t have got the ball if it wasn’t for the hard work of our defenders,” said Sneddon. “We out-tackled them and out-hustled them. It was a real team effort.”
The game plan from the get-go was to smother Carney’s potent offence.
“We tried to bottle them up,” Sneddon said. “They were still dangerous at midfield, but they didn’t have a lot of chances.”
There was certainly no love no love lost between these two teams on the pitch as Carney has earned a reputation as the bully of the AA North Zone after running up scores into double digits this season against some of the weaker teams. While their strategy hasn’t earned them many friends in the division, it has all but guaranteed them first place in the standings. While the Titans and Stars will likely finish the regular season with identical 7-1 records, barring any significant upsets, Carney gets the ties breaker on goal differential.
“They are a very talented team, and they don’t give any mercy,” said Sneddon.
Sneddon has instead opted to spread playing time around to his bench players once his team has secured big leads over their opposition. It may have cost the Titans top spot in league play, but it’s a strategy he hopes will pay off in the playoffs, when his secondary players may be called upon in the event of injury.
“Once you’re up four, five goals, the games over,” said Sneddon. “For us, we felt it was more important to get all of our players in the game.”
The SRT Titans were scheduled to play the Pitt Meadows Marauders (2-2-1) Thursday night and close out the regular season on the road against Garibaldi secondary (0-6) on Tuesday, Oct. 25.
The SRT Titans are Curtis Ogilvie, Konner McLeod, Simon Boserup, Jesse Erhardson, Martin Macik, Conner Henry, Brett Almond, Brendan Jones, Cole Lamont, Jacob Mattson, Matt Funk, Erik Lutsch, Alberto Garcia, Kyle Lloyd, Trevor White, Cole Almond, Graeme Meers, Elcio Do Amaral, Paolo Dait, Paul Bock, Emerson Kot, and Corey Pederson.