West blow Alma away
Tuesday, 13th August, 2019
By Tyler Hannigan
West handed an under-manned Alma an absolute belting while St Joes picked up a tough win later in the day in freezing conditions on Sunday in A Grade soccer.
The West Panthers and Alma Goats met in the early A Grade game and while West were missing some of their regular A Graders, Alma were much worse off as they barely scraped in with the minimum number of players required for a game.
It was always going to get ugly and the tone was set early as Jordan Cox pounced on West’s initial foray into attack and scored their first goal inside the opening minute of play.
Cox followed that with his second shortly after and when Ky Gilmour curled in a long-range shot with the wind, West had taken an early 3-0 lead.
Alma’s goal-keeper Luke Hall was under constant pressure and did the best he could given the circumstances but it was a procession to West. They locked the ball inside their forward half and queued up to take a shot on goal.
Shane Hayward and Zane Kemp kept things organised through the midfield while Cox and Chris West were always dangerous around goal.
Cox finished with an astonishing nine goals with Chris West scoring a double. Luke Kooyman and Aston Stuart also chipped in with a goal apiece as the Panthers won 14-nil.
The result keeps West well and truly atop the A Grade ladder and has done wonders for their goal-difference while Alma’s tough season sinks to a new low.
West went into the game without the likes of Madden Paul, Joe Langdon, Linden Cox and Leighton Raven but it mattered little. Raven won’t return this season having suffered a nasty leg injury on Saturday whilst playing in the AFL Broken Hill reserves for West.
The second game saw St Joes clash with Celtic in what was tipped to be a tight and physical affair and it lived up the hype.
St Joes started well before Celtic settled and started to get on top towards halftime in what was a back-and-forth contest. Neither side could find the back of the net during the first 45 minutes and were locked at 0-0 at the break.
The Joeys were the first to break the deadlock shortly after the restart as they made Celtic pay on the counter-attack with Liam King scoring his first goal of 2019.
Celtic tied things up thanks to a great free-kick by Lachlan Kaye which found its way past the St Joes keeper thanks to a little good fortune but the bottom line was that the score was all tied up at 1-1.
While United threatened a few times without finishing it off, St Joes took their chance off of a corner with Jyh Stubing heading home the winning goal.
It was St Joes winning 2-1 as the final whistle blew which keeps them in touch with West on the A Grade ladder. Celtic are now pretty well out of the minor premiership race and look set for the semi-final.
Blake Rogers had another very good game for Celtic and Kaye was impressive throughout while Caleb Craven performed admirably having backed up from B Grade earlier in the day.
While King and Stubing were their scorers, St Joes’ win was the result of a strong all-round team effort which has typified their 2019 season and will make them a genuine contender in the finals.
Alma had more luck in B Grade earlier in the day, scoring a 3-1 win over the Panthers while Celtic were easy winners against St Joes as Caleb Craven scored a double in the four-nil win.
There was just the one women’s game on Sunday after Celtic was forced to forfeit due to a lack of players, handing St Joes the competition points.
It was a thrilling women’s game later in the afternoon as Alma scored an important win over West. Heaven Celotto scored twice for the Goats as they took a 3-2 victory.
WEST 14 (J. Cox 9, C. West 2, K. Gilmour, L. Kooyman, A. Stuart) def ALMA 0
ST JOES 2 (L. King, J. Stubing) def CELTIC 1 (L. Kaye)
ALMA 3 (S. Harrap, C. Stenhouse, Own Goal) def WEST 1 (K. Gilmour)
CELTIC 4 (C. Craven, J. Dawes, G. Ross) def ST JOES 0
ALMA 3 (H. Celotto 2, S. Harman) def WEST 2 (E. Everett, M. Simmons)
ST JOES def CELTIC (forfeit)