Round 11 of the PS4 NPL2 Womens saw the Mariners Academy Women travel to Jensen Park, claiming a hard-earned 1-all draw with the highly-placed Bankstown City FC.
Bankstown City FC 1 (69’ Tania Baban) Mariners WNPL 1 (64’ Candice Phelan)
After a 2 week layoff due to the bye and a washout, Mariners WNPL coach Mark Yule knew the challenge for his side was to start with intensity.
Bankstown were confident after their last-ditch victory last weekend, and the Lions started the contest on the front foot with early raids into the area, one particular venture putting a scare through the Mariners, who were saved only by the safe hands of keeper Jess Schultz.
Both teams battled in the midfield as they tested each other out. Bankstown sent some panic into the Mariners backline from a rolled-in free kick that clattered the post, and was swept behind to keep the scores at 0-0.
The gallant Mariners were pushed back by Bankstown for most of the first half, but in a promising charge, Mariners Georgia Davis burst into the Lions' penalty area, muscling off a defender before a direct shot landed in the hands of their keeper.
Right on the half-time break the Lions worked down the wing before turning the ball back into the centre but the shot was fired wide. The girls went into the sheds 0-0 at half time.
Straight after the break, saw Bankstown's best chance of the game as their striker twisted and turned in the box before unleashing a shot that Schultz had to make a full stretch save to deny the opposition their opener.
Yule sensed his team tiring due to a lack of match fitness, and looked to his bench sending on prolific scorer Candice Phelan who was returning from a month long injury lay off. Phelan was tightly marked by the Lions defense, and early runs saw her shut down.
However Phelan would not be denied and when served the ball on the 18 yard line fired a curving shot while falling, into the top left corner. The Mariners took a 1-nil lead after 64 minutes.
The goal swung the Lions into action, as their striker forced Schultz into another important save. Soon after, only a desperate last-ditch off the line clearance by ever-reliable Mariners defender Liz Shorter from a Bankstown corner, kept the scoreline at 1-nil.
Bankstown wouldn't be denied though, and soon after raced down the right wing before cutting back to their striker Tania Baban, who finish well to level scores at 1-1.
Mariners captain Oriana Keane had played herself to a standstill controlling the midfield and reluctantly left the field late in the game. Yule called for his players to hold onto the ball and to keep their intensity. Defender Maddy Ryan put in a huge effort at the back repelling the fast finishing Lions and rallying the team to hold on to a 1-all score line.
Yule was pleased with the effort against one of the competition's top teams.
"I felt Bankstown played very well. They controlled the game really well especially after the equaliser as we were running out of gas," said Yule.
"We remain undefeated in the last few weeks which is good especially after being rusty from a two week break." He finished.
Round 12 next week and the Mariners Women make the long trip to take on Sutherland Shire FA. Under 13’s kick off at 8.30am, with first grade kick off at 3pm.
Match stats - Round 11
Central Coast Mariners Academy Women 1 Bankstown City FC 1
Sunday 25th June, Jensen Park
Central Coast Mariners 1 (Phelan '64) Bankstown City Lions 1 (Baban '69)
Central Coast Mariners: 1. SCHULTZ Jess, 4. DAVIS Georgia, 5. WADDELL Letisha, 6. MCATAMNEY Jade, 7. BLANCH Gabrielle, 8. KEANE Oriane(TERRY '86), 12. OLIVEIRA Katie, 13. KROEMER Jade-Anne(PHELAN '55), 14. SHORTER Elizabeth, 15. RYAN Madelyn and 16. DUFFY Kate(JOHNSON '79)
Subs not used: 10. GRANERO Christine and 20. BRADBURY Maddison
Bankstown City Lions: 2. BABAN Tania, 4. BABIC Liana, 10. MICHEAL Maniso, 11. MARTINO Joanna, 14. PETKOVIC Jelena(ROBINS '73), 15. VICKAS Allegra, 17. MURPHY Caitlin, 18. OSMAN Doris(LUCIEN '62), 19. KRSTANOVSKA Renee, 29. LEE Alicia(OPOKU-AGYEMANG' 79) and 30. IBBOTSON Charlotte
Subs not used: 1. FERREIRA Lana and 26. ROBINS Elise
- Under 13 CCMA 1 BCFC 0
- Under 15 CCMA 2 BCFC 1
- Under 17 CCMA 1 BCFC 4
- Reserves CCMA 0 BCFC 7