24th August 2019
Mt Eliza U8 Red 1 v Casey Panthers 1
The Mt Eliza U8 Reds slogged out a long and challenging draw away to a determined, well drilled and skillful Casey Panthers side. The Casey Panthers provided the Reds with their toughest challenge of the year the last time they played - as the boys clung on to a 2-1 win against some skillful Panther players. We knew that this game would be the greatest challenge yet to our undefeated season and those predictions turned out to be true. The boys were greeted by sunny conditions but some notable head winds in a +50km/hr breeze and a Casey goal keeper the size of Goliath who must be the one of the largest 8 year old boys on the planet! The game got off to a good and even start with the Reds playing well as the sides felt each other out. Christian Bethune and Callum Helmore assumed attacking mid-field positions and both contributed well in the first 10 minutes as the ball moved from end to end. The first notable action of the game was when the ball was deep in the in the Reds’ right half as Christian won a key possession and passed the ball to the spot where the ever dangerous Callum controlled well and fired quickly to wrong foot the diving keeper and slot the first score on the board. However, Casey had the wind at their backs and responded well, pressing forward and forcing a good save from keeper Angus Goodison, who was well supported by Lewis Jedynak and Ewan Barnes in defense and the ever present Max Silk in defensive mid-field. At the 10 minute mark, Elliot Melder replaced Luke Batey in attack as Austen Bettess joined Christian in attacking mid-field, well supported by Thomas Allison who was welcomed back into defensive mid-field with Alfie Main-Siveyer in defense. However, Casey soon found their way through this defensive unit and it was only the strong chase of Thomas Allison that saved the day and forced a goal kick. However, the goal kick was not our best as the ball was kept too central and landed at the feet of Casey’s best player who controlled well and struck a sweet ball that flew with the wind into the back of the net. A super goal. The boys rallied to respond well as Austen had a great shot that was well saved by a diving Hulk in goals as we went to the end of a very long half (+25 minutes) at 1-1. The boys were confident at the start of the second half (promised by the opposition coach to be back at 20 minutes) and with the wind at their backs the Reds dominated the game. Casey put up the shutters and played 6 boys behind the ball with a deep striker trying to hit us on the counter. However, the Casey defense was willing and the boys struggled to link up the passes that allowed them to create the space and time to shoot with Callum having the best chance of the opening stages, hitting the upright to be denied a brace. Elliot then re-entered the game in attack and linked up well with his mate Austen who forced another great save from the boyman in goal. Casey did get their chance on the counter and with some good play they got in behind our defenders with the final shot well saved by a diving Lewis in goals to the cheers of the crowd (and coach). That was Casey’s last look at goal as the Reds then held the ball in their half and peppered the goals forcing numerous corners and throw ins that resulted in many an exciting goal mouth scramble and save or deflection for another corner. It was gripping stuff as the Reds pressed for the win. Austen soon won the ball in the mid-field and ran into some space, firing from range with his cracking right boot, sweetly timing a ball that zipped through the air and looked homeward bound. For the first time the Behemoth in Casey’s goal found himself a mere spectator. However, the cross tail wind at the back of the speeding ball turned from friend to foe as it drifted just wide - clipping the top of the upright with some brute force on the way through. The pressure and corners continued with Austen and Christian firing well on goal from short corners that were both well saved by the keeper and many more scrambled attempts on goal being saved by the Casey manchild or well deflected by defenders to safety. The game seemed to go on forever as time almost stood still. Ironically, the ‘Game Leader’ had a whistle and a stop watch around his neck but it seemed that neither worked as we drifted towards the hour mark with the game still in full flight. In fact, the game went on so long that it looked the like their keeper was visibly growing in front of us. The ‘Game Leader’ also struggled to hear or speak to allow coaches to make substitutions or let the players know his decisions so we seemed to be in a twilight zone game that could have gone on forever. The Reds coach was hardly going to call time as we pressed for the win but when the ‘Game Leader’ was asked by the Casey coach, at 5 minutes to the hour, how much time was left. He checked his ‘stop watch’, had a think about it and whispered a barely audible ‘8 and a half minutes’ to go. Finally, he was coaxed by the Casey Coach into lightly passing some air from lungs through whistle to end a gripping but rather extended contest. A great effort from the boys today who were challenged on their record and fought hard all day to get a win – never content with the draw or dropping their heads despite the frustration in not finding the back of the net - but credit must go to the Casey players and keeper who defended valiantly and deserved ‘the point’. I feel for the boys subbed off after the first 10 minutes of each half and then having watch the next 20 minutes play out. I’ll try and make it up to you. Player of the day was a tough decision as all played well but Thomas Allison had another great game and collected his third player of the day award this the year. Well done Thomas - you are a little gun! Go Reds!
Another good game against Rosebud, We played very well. Amazing goal keepers not one goal through from Noah S and Tadhg. We won 5 to 0. They all played exceptionally well.
Another solid performance by the team against Bentleigh.
Some fantastic passing by all team members. This was evident by a terrific team goal that started deep in defence and ended with a cross near the corner post and tapped in for a goal.
Callum was solid in defence for the entire match along with Ben, stopping many attacks by the opposition.
Archie was also a good contributor both forward and in defence.
Phoenix had a standout game with some great runs with the ball from midfield. Will also had a great game.
Next week we are away to Sandringham for our last game of the season.
Doveton Doveton 2 – 4 Mt.Eliza Reds
The lads were up for this away game at a windy Doveton ground. After a narrow loss at home earlier in the season, we were looking for a win this time around.After an even first 10 minutes, playing with the wind, Paul put some pressure on to create an own goal from Doveton.The game remained a tight affair until and halftime came with us 1-0 up. The coaches reminded the lads that this will be a battle playing against the wind and to keep the ball on the floor as much as possible. Sam Brookes scored our second before Doveton had a little rally and scored to make it 2-1.The midfield battle was intense with Lewis working hard breaking up the Doveton attacks. Nige, Bob (Marley), Lachie T and Gidi were immense in defence, with Lachie strong in goal again this week. Again Sam scored his second goal of the game to make it 3-1 before Doveton scored again to make for an interesting last few minutes. Woody then got our 4th to make it a final score of 4-2.
Hampton Dreamers 3 – 2 Mt Eliza U10 Girls
Our last game at home for this season and it was an exciting one! In the first half, the girls played well with some good use of space and stronger kicking than in previous weeks. Both teams had an equal amount of attack and unfortunately, despite some great goal keeping from Leyla Ay, Hampton were able to score 3 goals but Mt Eliza were unable to convert our chances. Strong players in the first half included Alex Ewart with some power kicking, Mia Jordan with some clever passing and Chloe Morgan with some smart and quick clearances in defence. The second half was to go a lot better for the girls. As in previous games, they have never dropped their heads and given up and their persistence in attack paid off with a Hampton own goal after pressure from our forwards. This was soon followed up by a fantastic shot from the top of the rectangle into the corner of the net by Gemma Gilchrist. It was beginning to look like a Mt Eliza comeback! Despite more hair-raising moments of near goals, it was not to be on the day but it was great entertainment for the parents on the sideline and a credit to the girls for the quality of their play. Their progress is illustrated by the fact that last time we played this team we lost 11-1 earlier in the season. A great effort by all the girls on the day! A great last home game. Thanks to Oli Rivett for his refereeing this season also!
It would have been interesting to play Berwick with our full team but it wasn't to be with 5 regular players away. A massive thanks must go to Surek from the 12 Greens and Tully, Bodhi and Levi from the Yellows for helping out and giving us 100%. It was a 6-0 nil loss but the scoreline didn't do justice to the quality of our defending and midfield play. Levi, Indigo and player of the match Tom Rich were solid most of the time but Berwick dominated with their possession and strength on the ball and we were punished in front of goal because we gave them too much time and space to shoot. Often we would get drawn out to the sides and their mid-fielders would be left unmarked in front of the goal. Benji was unlucky not to get on the end of more of the shots. The referee missed some handballs, shirt pulling and let the ball roll over the sideline a couple of times. We went down 1 nil just before half time and couldn't quite get a much-needed equaliser. Harrison did well today with one on ones and moved the ball down the wing well, often from well-placed passes from Tom Rich. As with previous games against Berwick, they were strong down the middle in the second half and had a few strikes on goals. Against teams like this it's all about closing down the space and not getting drawn out wide. The coach was very complimentary about our team and said when we've played them we've been at times the best opposition they've had all season. Despite the scoreline we can be proud considering the absentees today - it was an enjoyable, quality game to watch and a great learning curve for Mt Eliza against what is the basis of a very strong Berwick NPL team. It was also nice to see players from across our club pitch in and help out.
Mt. Eliza U12 Orange 2 - 1 Hampton Park Sparrows
A shortened game today of 30 mins due to the late arrival of Hampton Park and many delays to the start while the Ref and Mentor went through the official practices.
It certianly threw the boys off their game, and with a physically bigger team and wild windy conditions out there, they never really hit their stride. Regardless, this team is learning how to win and notched up their 6th in a row with a scrappy 2-1 victory. Kai scored early on and then an own goal from Hampton at a corner saw us go into the half time break 2 nil up. Hampton got one back very late on in the second half, but it was too late to make a difference and the boys saw the game out.
Ben and Josh W-E took the awards today. Both were outstanding in defence on the left and right, constantly working with the centre back to cover each other, both making several goal saving touches.