After a slow start for the fall season, the Jaguars enter Columbus Day weekend with the daunting task of trying to win a tournamnet from a very tough field.
The first game was against the Wall Fury who is a very solid team and a powerhouse in the MOSA league. The Fury started the game physically dominating much of the opening minutes with their powerful kicks. However, most of their efforts were thwarted. The game then turned into one of the ‘norms’ of the Jaguars fall season-a grinding game that could turn on any goal. Wall appeared to be the stronger team for much of the game, but after a 0-0 first half, the Jaguars appeared to gain some life in the 2nd half and had several offensive pushes but to no avail as all the effective shots were either shot wide or stopped by the Wall keeper. Rayna Hamden and the defensive unit played their usual strong game and kept Wall from having any really strong chances. The game ended in a 0-0 tie.
The 2nd game was against the Middletown Sonic White. This was a rematch of the Marlboro tournament where Middletown scored a last minute goal to tie the Jaguars and win that tournament. The Jaguars were really motivated from that game. However, it was again a scoreless tie at half even though the Jaguars appeared to be the stronger team for much of it. Midway through the 2nd half, Oshynn Cosom scored from a through ball from Kaylee Blain that was a stellar finish into the back of the net. It seemed like the scoring slump was time to finally be over. Middletown, however, was clearly aware of their prior comeback against the Jaguars and continued to push with a couple of shots that gave Rayna the opportunity to make a couple really solid saves. When it was all said and done, the Jaguars survived with a 1-0 victory.
The third game was against the East Brunswick Strikers of whom the Jaguars played to a scoreless tie the prior week in a JAGS league crossover game. If the Jaguars won or tied this game, they would go to the tournament final. If they lost, they went home. Right on cue, the teams fought valiantly in the first half and led to a scoreless tie. After the break, and after several solid opportunites by the Strikers, they finally were able to put one in the back of the net. The Jaguars could not get any offensive momentum going and as such, East Brunswick held on for the win. The Jaguars played well and only gave up 1 goal in the three games but it was the continued offensive struggles that has plagued the Jaguars all fall that appears to have left the team somewhat frustrated and down after being disappointed at not making the final game.