|2019 U14 Grading||11th May 10:30am||League Round 5||WWSC Main Pitch 1|
In the fifth and final grading round of the season, Woodside U14 Red welcomed visitors Mount Barker Red. With four wins under their belt the home side was feeling nervous about maintaining their top position on the ladder. Despite Woodside’s valiant efforts over the previous rounds, and a glitch in how the ladder is determined, the true ladder leading title belongs to Stirling United, who surpassed Woodside’s goal difference after the first round. Regardless, Woodside’s scalp would be a lovely memento for any team taking them on, and Mount Barker had their eye on it.
Mount Barker’s Coach, Dan Hamilton, brought a full suite of players, including substitutes, whilst Woodside’s Coach, BRUCE TONKIN, supplied the same. A similar supporter count for both teams filled the sides, whilst the two teams warmed up, awaiting the sounding of the referee’s whistle. The game was finally marked underway at around 10:40am.
Mount Barker Red took control of the game from kick-off, keeping possession of the the ball for 80% of the first 10 minutes. With numerous strikes at goal, a couple rebounding off the cross bar, it was surprising that they didn’t score first. A beautifully timed run and cross by JETT TONKIN allowed AILBHE BIFFEN to hit the back of net behind a keeper who seemingly didn’t know he was there.
One goal wasn’t enough for the home to feel comfortable. Neither was it too much for the away team to feel uncomfortable. After continuing control of the play Mount Barker Red finally caught up with a nifty goal from Max Chapman, much to the delight of his coach and supporters.
Another ten minutes played out before the referee declared half time. After some refreshments, and a couple of positional changes and substitutions made by both coaches, the game continued.
Ten minutes into the second half TOBY VINCENT had a superb run down the left side of the pitch. Toby, with no one presenting as a viable passing option, held control of the ball for an extended amount of time, passing numerous opponents in his run towards goal. If he was to score it’d be very deserving – and this is precisely what he did, adding a second goal to the home team’s tally.
Woodside, one goal in front with 10 minutes to go, then went into defensive mode, placing the largest and strongest players along the back to protect keeper JAYDEN STEWARD from any last minute assaults. Mount Barker Red still gave it a shot, but unfortunately nothing became of it.
Unfortunately AIDEN SUTTON, regardless of his notable plays of brilliance, incurred an ankle injury in the dying minutes and needed support getting off the pitch. Aiden will likely take the opportunity to have a week off to recover whilst the first Cup games play out.
“Mount Barker really deserved that game”, suggested the Woodside Coach, post-game. “With a much higher percentage of control and many more strikes at goal they’ll be a formidable opponent to most teams, easily deserving of first division placement.”
Woodside Red takes on Torrens Valley at Birdwood on Saturday whilst Mount Barker Red will visit Rangers at Ashton.