|2019 U14 Grading||27th April 9:00am||League Round 3||WWSC Main Pitch 1|
The 3rd round in the U14 grading period saw Woodside Red take on Stirling Districts with an early kick-off at Woodside. With numerous players missing from both sides due to the last weekend of the school holidays the result would never reflect a true match up the two teams. Missing from Woodside's line-up was centre-back CHRIS COLLINS and left-footed midfielder AIDEN SUTTON, who has yet to have the opportunity to appear for the Red team due to other sporting commitments. Meanwhile AILBHE BIFFEN, who has played a few games for Woodside as a striker, was yet to score.
The referee sounded his whistle and the game was underway, Woodside keen to land the first goal for the day. With the ball in the home team’s control it was only a matter of time before they’d open their account, and, after a couple of light attempts, Ailbhe was the first on the third minute. An audible sigh of relief came from his supporters and his coach, BRUCE TONKIN.
After numerous crosses and corner kicks from Ailbhe, JAMES WALL and JETT TONKIN, Woodside was bound to claim the second, which was done on the 10th minute from CHRISTIAN FRANCIS.
With one sub on the bench the coach took the opportunity to give HAYDEN DAVIS a run in place of JOSH BEVAN. It was not long after when Stirling Districts lifted their attacks, giving Woodside keeper JAYDEN STEWARD no end of grief over the period of about 5 minutes. Jayden held on well, providing an opportunity for James Wall to have a long run down the pitch, landing Woodside’s third goal.
Stirling Districts, not keen to enter the second half without a goal, finally opened their account on the 30th minute, much to the delight of ALL spectators. Following this Woodside’s cheeky central striker, Christian, claimed the fifth goal of the game, sending the home team into half time 4-1 up.
The second half continued much like the first, with Woodside adding on an extra three goals before the end of the game. The last goal landing as a point-blank lob from HAYDEN DAVIS, this time not overlooked by his father.
With Woodside having a total of 28 shots on goals, 18 of which were considered on-target, they’re feeling comfortable, “a little too comfortable perhaps” suggests Coach Tonkin. “Whilst Stirling Districts was the biggest challenge we’ve seen, the main concern we have is when the grading rounds are complete what sort of challenges we’ll be seeing then.”
Man of the match, at least for the Woodside Coach, has to go to TOMMAS BALACCO who went above and beyond usual expectations, producing a text-book example of his position in right-back.
Woodside Red goes on to see Murray Bridge Gold in the 4th grading round, whilst Stirling Districts takes on Mount Barker Blue.