Despite holding a lead until the death, the Central Coast Mariners Academy Women conceded a stoppage time equaliser away from home to share the points with Inter Lions SC in the PS4 NPL 2.
Central Coast Mariners Academy Women 1 (65’ Oriana Keane) Inter Lions SC Women 1 (91’ Leanne Sharp)
A bitterly cold Concord Oval was the venue where the inform Mariners Women were primed and ready to continue their late season surge.
With eyes on the finals, Mariners Coach Mark Yule had his players focussed and a strategy in place to keep attacking and play the open style of football that had seen them successful in recent weeks.
The Inter Lions defence however, seemed intent on impressing their new coach and time after time snuffed out the visitor’s raids on goal.
The Mariners defensive line of Letisha Wadell, Georgia Davis, Liz Shorter and Katie Oliveira were at their usual high level and also blunted any Inter attacks.
The first half ended scoreless after very few chances and a tireless battle in the midfield.
Coach Yule’s half time talk was tough where he commanded his charges to be themselves, refocus, work hard and execute the basics consistently.
An air of confidence was obvious in the Mariners Women as they stood in formation awaiting the second half to begin.
Captain Oriana Keane lead by example and dominated with strength on the ball and a non compromising defensive style.
Again the Mariners looked to utilise their speedy flanks and better connective play saw more chances created. Jade McAtamney was buoyed by her midfield partner and she too began to take control, charging into space and delivering quality balls forward.
It was Captain Keane who saw space and charged forward in the 63rd minute cleverly getting past two defenders before firing off a shot that the Inter Keeper had to deflect at full stretch.
Keane moved forward to take the ensuing corner. Yule had his players flood the Inter six-yard-box in a set play designed to unsettle the keeper and the defence. Keane’s delivery was superb and that combined with the cleverly crafted set play saw the ball curl into the nett untouched and gifted the Mariners a 1-0 lead.
However the Inter players did not capitulate and the injection of some fresh legs off the bench saw the Mariners defense put under pressure.
The game continued in the same vein as the clock wound down and the Mariners conceded a free-kick just on the edge of their area.
Inter’s striker was on the end of a flat fast delivery and her header flew into the corner, levelling the scores with the last play of the game.
Post game coach Yule was disappointed for his players but remained up beat about their chances over the coming weeks.
“The lesson is clearly that at this level we need to work hard every week. We just need to focus on each game and on executing the basics more consistently. We have a good run home and will need to take our chances,” Yule said.
Next week the Mariners Women host the competition front runners Sydney Olympic FC at Pluim Park. Entry is free. Under 13’s kick off at 8.30am and First grade kick off at 3pm.
Sunday 16th July
Central Coast Mariners Women: 1. SCHULTZ Jess, 4. DAVIS Georgia, 5. WADDELL Letisha, 6. MCATAMNEY Jade (13.BRYANT Grace), 7. BLANCH Gabrielle, 8. KEANE Oriane, 12. OLIVEIRA Katie, 10. JOHNSON Rochelle (2. Jessica Terry), 14. SHORTER Elizabeth, 9. PHELAN Candice and 16. DUFFY Kate (15. Nubia Lopez)
Subs not used: 20. BRADBURY Maddison & 3. Molly Couch
Yellow cards: Oriana Keane
Inter Lions SC: Jessica Broadfoot, Rachel Cavanagh, Natalie Di Francesco, Angela Gardner, Maria Kalogeropoulos, Sarah Mandile, Taylor Mikaelian, Zoe Zaczek, Kate Mateffy, Leanne Sharp, Mel Parlato, Georgie Bourbous, Rhonda Succar, Alex Vousden
- Under 13 CCMA 1 ILSC 1
- Under 15 CCMA 0 ILSC 0
- Under 17 CCMA 4 ILSC 0
- Reserves CCMA 1 ILSC 2