Game 8, Nov. 1: With only 12 players, Green River FC was once again shorthanded. With only one sub, everyone had to log considerable minutes. This, coupled with an opponent that was sitting in the top 3 of the standings, should have negatively affected the team. Instead, it did the opposite. Under the dark skies and windy weather, the team was playing with a renewed sense of team. They were communicating, working together, passing effectively and holding their own. It was as if the team was growing up right there on the field. This new brand of play was showing results as well, with GRCFC up on their opponent, Footmode Squad, 2 goals to zero at the half.
The second half brought with it rain and injuries, two things no one wants to see. Soon, the game was tied 3 – 3. GRCFC had opportunities, and kept the ball on the opponent’s side of the field, but couldn’t seem to put the ball in the goal like they had the first half. As the rain became more intense, the injuries and exhaustion seemed to mount, resulting in 11 available players and no subs. It was too much to keep under control and Footmode Squad eventually scored the winning goal, going ahead by a goal. With only a few minutes left to equalize, the exhausted Green River Gators kept fighting, taking shot after shot, almost converting a number of times. But in the end, there just wasn’t enough time. The final of 4 – 3 was definitely hard to swallow, especially since the team played so well. But should this new style of play stick, Green River FC will have a chance to finish the season with 2 straight victories.
Game 7, Oct. 25: Green River FC was out to win. With a skeleton squad of 12, the Gators definitely played with a purpose. They shot out to an early lead and looked to leave the WaveBreakers in the dust. But it seems the problems of the Seahawks in recent weeks may be a bit contagious as Green River FC played strong and determined throughout much of the game only to relax just a bit too early. Having given all they had through 85 minutes of play, GRCFC was up 4 – 2 and running on fumes. The WaveBreakers scored a goal to get within a goal and everyone in green thought that would be as close as they would get. But the defense was drained, and the offense couldn’t keep possession of the ball which led to an equalizer with only a few minutes left. Giving up 2 goals in the final 5 minutes broke everyone’s heart. The only consolation is that it was a draw instead of a loss. Having the win all but wrapped up only to see it disappear was incredibly difficult to accept. One thing is certain, the team needs all of it’s players. Green River FC is only able to win as a complete team; if 1/3 of the team is missing, then it will always be an uphill battle.
Game 6, Oct. 18: With only 11 players at the game, everyone had to give it their full 90! Playing against the to team in the league, Bhakunde Bhoot FC, Green River FC was up to the challenge and kept the score close at the half. But the exhaustion seemed to set in as the 2nd half progressed. The 7:15am departure time for the game also didn’t help, you can be sure. As the game continued, GRCFC couldn’t keep their intensity up and eventually lost 4 – 1. The exhaustion led to a lack of teamwork and trust. When you’re playing a top team, you can’t have any lack of focus. It seems that it just wasn’t the Gators’ day today.
Game 5, Oct. 11: After a win and a draw, Green River FC was looking to continue their string of quality games. They ran into a team full of attitude and brashness, just like their team name – Bandits. One Bandits player in particular was even sent off for his retaliation and unsportsmanlike conduct. Green River FC players kept their cool, and played hard. It was a beautiful day, and an exciting game, but there just wasn’t enough offense to keep the game close. Green River FC lost for the first time in 3 games by a score of 2 – 0.