MATCH OF THE ROUND
Killarney 3 – Kariong 0
Killarney was able to get their season off and running after claiming their first 3 points off the season over Kariong.
Kariong started the game the better of the two sides, pressing the Killarney goal in the early stages of the game. Killarney’s defence held strong and scrambled well to prevent Kariong from finding the back of the net. 20 minutes in it would be Killarney who created a great attacking move which saw Jo Thompson score Killarney’s first goal. After going 1-0 up, Killarney turned the pressure on Kariong as they searched for another goal. Great goalkeeping from the Kariong number 1 saw the score remain at 1-0 until the 35th minute when Jess Andrew created a 1-on-1 and this time beat the Kariong goalkeeper to double Killarney’s lead to 2-0.
The second half saw Kariong once again start the half the better of the two teams, putting pressure on the Killarney defence which once again stood strong. Kariong continued to push forward and remained on top of Killarney for most of the second half but unfortunately for the Kariong side, their shots on target could not find the back of the net. 20 minutes into the second half, Killarney made a move down the right side that saw Alice McKee strike the ball into the back of the net to give Killarney their third and final goal.
“Full credit to Kariong for never giving up,” said Killarney coach Adam Tait.
“Unfortunately, we were missing some key players and with some players backing up for their second game of the day, this made it difficult for us to maintain our stamina throughout the whole game. Well done to Killarney, they’re always a good contest for us every time we’re up against them.” Added Kariong coach Haylie Eyers.
Umina 11 – Wyong 1
Umina handed Wyong their second 11-1 defeat in consecutive weeks as The Eagles start their year off with 2 wins from 2 games.
It didn’t take long for Umina to find the back of the net for their first goal of the day as Hannah Batten scored a well-worked goal off a free kick within 45 seconds. Both teams found how hard it was to play on the pitch, with both teams having a lot of misplaced passes and touches within the first 10 minutes. A poor pass out from Umina’s backline fell to Wyong’s Georgia Davis who produced a superb finish for their only goal. The rest of the match was smooth sailing as Umina found their groove with Hannah Batten picking up a first half hattrick.
Umina remained relentless over the 90, scoring a goal inside every 10 minutes of the game, 6 of which came from Kate Styles who was just too fast for the high line of Wyong. Amber Mangan and Gemma Crowson were among the other who found their name on the scoresheet for Umina.
“Looking at the previous result we knew we had to focus on our own game and making sure we play for the full 90 minutes, which was a big takeaway from the week prior against Kariong”. Umina coach Steve Donaldson also added, “Praise to Wyong for playing with determination for the full 90 minutes which will be their hardest 2 weeks in the competition, Wyong have quality players in their team who just need to gel defensively.”
“Umina was a well-balanced team, match fitness is an issue for us at the moment and with a very interrupted pre-season, having not played a single game together has shown in our first two games. Having said that the girls have played some really good football, we need to take advantage of our opportunities in front of goal”. Said Wyong coach Paul Halton.
Southern & Ettalong 1 – Kanwal 0
Southern was able to pick up their first win of the season, winning 1-0 in a very gruelling contest against Kanwal.
Kanwal started strong in the first 20 minutes having the majority of possession. Kanwal found it hard as free kicks and stoppages made it hard for the Bulls to keep their momentum going as they succumb to their own frustrations. This allowed Southern back into the game as each team pushed for a first-half goal. Kanwal’s Maddi Dunlop and Stacey Thompson both had clear opportunities to take their side in front, but both were unable to find the back of the net as the game remained 0-0 at half time.
Returning from the break, Southern and Kanwal both continued to push for the opening goal of the match. Kanwal’s Kimberley Burke made multiple great saves coming off her line to deny Southern’s second-half goal attempts. It took a very special free-kick from 25-yards out by Southern’s Elaine McConaghey which found the back of Kanwal’s net. Kanwal searched for an equalizer but was unlucky not to find the back of the net as the score stood 1-0. Elaine’s goal was the only difference between the two sides on the day as Southern walked away with the 3 points.
“We started off really strong on Sunday, but we let our frustrations get the better of us and in the end, it’s what let us down. Credit to Southern, they fought hard and came away with the points. This is a game we put to the back of our mind and turn our focus towards round 3,” commented Kanwal’s coach Hayls Ballard when reflecting on the game.
Terrigal 0 – Gosford 2
Gosford City kept their perfect start to the season after beating Terrigal 2-0 in a highly competitive and quality game between the two sides.
Darryl Darke’s Terrigal side came out very organised and pressed Gosford high and hard from kick-off, The Gosford girls started very slow turning over possession with loose passing and slow ball speed. This allowed Terrigal to win the ball numerous times in Gosford’s half as Terrigal caused real problems and were unlucky not to enter half-time with the lead, but Terrigal was unable to break down a well organised Gosford defence.
Gosford introduced Lucy Metcalfe into the midfield during the break as they started the second half with renewed enthusiasm. Gosford started to move through the gears and found the opening goal when some quick combination play in Terrigal’s final third saw Jessica Dominello played through on goal by Maddie Yates who slotted the ball past an on-coming goalkeeper to give Gosford a 1-0 lead. The game continued to flow end to end until the 78th minute when an individual effort from Tahlor Thackeray saw her cut in from the right-hand side and riffle the ball into the top corner to give Gosford a 2-0 lead. Very late in the game, Gosford’s Maria Aspitia was through on goal only to be brought down by Terrigal’s goalie as Gosford were awarded a penalty. Maria stepped up and took the penalty, but Terrigal’s Mackenzie Walker saved her effort and the game finish 2-0.
Gosford coach Pete Edwards now looks forward to his Mate Association Cup Grand Final this Sunday against East Gosford. “Lots to work on coming into the cup final next week. Huge praise to Darryl and Terrigal who have come a long way since last season and played some really good football, putting us under huge pressure all game.”
“Duffy’s was privileged to witness a high-quality performance by two sides focused on attacking football,” stated Darke.
Woongarrah 0 – East Gosford 6
East Gosford kept their extraordinary defensive record alive after not conceding a single goal once again and taking down Woongarrah 6-0.
The majority of the first half between Woongarrah and East Gosford was played within the Wildcats defensive half. The Woongarrah side tried hard but could not get into the flow of the game. East Gosford would open the scoring through an indirect free kick that resulted in Ashleigh Bax finding the back of the net. East Gosford would double their lead through Hayley Blunden after an attacking play from the midfield saw her shot from outside the 18-yard box find the back of the net. The Rams would go on to score another before the half time whistle to take the score to 3-0.
The second half for Woongarrah was significantly better than the first. With a change of formation from coach Dave Hurley and also the intensity of his players increasing, the Wildcats put pressure on the oppositions back four and goalkeeper. Woongarrah continued to press as they created plenty of scoring opportunities however, they were unfortunate to not convert any of these opportunities into goals. Still searching for a goal of their own, Woongarrah pushed players forward which left them vulnerable at the back. This allowed East Gosford to punish Woongarrah with 3 additional goals to end the match thanks to Jasmine Beacroft who found herself on the scoresheet with a goal. Annika Hansen and Ashleigh Bax would both finish the game with 2 goals for the Rams.
East Gosford will look to keep this momentum going into this weekend as they face Gosford City in the Mate Association Cup Grand Final on Sunday the 25th of April at Pluim Park.
Written by Adam Blunden