All available six points were taken back to Woonona from the Men’s Teams on ANZAC DAY when Woonona FC took on Cringila Lions at Crehan Park. After less than ideal preparations for both teams through the week the boys shook it off and got on with the job at hand winning both games and playing some good football on the way.

The evening started with Youth Grade showing that after a few rough games in the first few rounds, with a good work rate and determination a result can be there for the taking. The boys looked the better of the teams through the whole first half adapting to a new style of playing very well. There passing and movement starved Cringila of possession and Woonona could have been in front after a few good chances fell to Josh Martin and Jordan Cox. Unfortunately they couldn’t put them away and the scores went in at half time 0-0.

The feeling was positive moving into the second half but it didn’t take long before Cringila took the lead leaving most of the sharkie fans in disbelief. Woonona still pushed hard after that and showed good signs and creating chances. Their hard work paid off when they were awarded a penalty which Jack Rimington finished off after the first attempt was saved. The young sharkies weren’t finished there but, they kept pressing and pushing for the winner. With about 15 to go Jordan Cox was the hero after finishing off a well worked move. The last 15 minutes showed a good sign of character to be able to hold on to the lead. 1-2 the final score and is Youth Grades first points of the season. “Well done lads.”

In the main game Woonona got off to a flying start hitting the lead after 8 minutes when we saw Luke (Mitto) Mittwollen being put on a platter by Paul Thompson after his superb run down the left caught two defenders flat footed before crossing to perfection to an unmarked Mitto on the 6 yard box.

The next 25 minutes was good to watch from a spectator point of view with both sides moving the ball around and creating some half chances. Woonona created the best of them and in the 32nd minute Mitto was again the scorer this time after some great play from the right hand side. After a brilliant ball winning challenge from Lachlan Feterplace on half way he made a pass to Trent (Wortho) Worthington with his back to goal and continued his run past him along the line. The screaming for the ball he was doing created a perfect distraction for Wortho to fake line and turn inside at pace. Wortho then threaded a neat pass behind the line where Mitto was storming into a one on one chance. Mitto then slotted it across the Cringila keeper into the bottom corner.

Only four minutes later Woonona found themselves 3-0 up after they received a free kick from the left hand side just inside the Cringila half. The cross was hit in well but you could say it could have been dealt with by the Cringila goalkeeper. He decided to punch instead of catch and it happened to fall straight to a waiting Pat Morales who hit a half volley first time into the bottom corner from about 22 yards out. Good result for Pat to open his account for Woonona after playing well all game. Woonona went into the break at 3-0 to the good.

At the break there was a lot of talk about ensuring Woonona didn’t let Cringila back into the game and that’s exactly what happened after only 6 minutes of kicking off the second half. The goal came from a corner which I’m sure coach Rob Bemi would be very disappointed in. It got worse for the Sharkies 10 minutes later when Cringila scored again with a tap in on the far post after some missed tackles on the back left hand goal line saw a cross come in to an unmarked player.

For the next 15 minutes Cringila were looking good to get an equalizer after creating a few chances and Woonona really not being able to get out of their own half. During this time Bemi made a few key substitutions bringing on Ben Ellul, Adam Di Pietro and Valentino Merxhushi (Nino) for Kyran Della Vedova, Luke Mittwollan and Paul Thompson respectively. This tended to become the last defining factor of the game as all three players come on and produced much needed energy in both defence and attack. With 13 minutes to go in the game one of those substitutes, Adam Di Pietro, found himself catching onto a ball behind the defence in which he outpaced the defender to create a one on one opportunity. The goalkeeper came out and Di Pietro produced a nice little chip to force him to have to pick the ball out of the back of the net for the fourth time of the night. Sharkies then held on to that result finishing the game as 4-2 winners.

This result see’s the First Grade Team make the top of the ladder but with other teams still needing to play a few catch up games. Woonona will next be playing at home next Saturday 3rd May at Ocean Park. They will also be playing in there Round 2 Bert Bampton Cup match against South Coast United on Sunday 4th.

COYS!