We started the match on a brilliant note. We knew that we faced a challenging team who ranked high on the ladder but we were eager and relished another opportunity to demonstrate ourselves on the pitch. Plus we had an added boost of morale when our coach shared some positive encouragement from another team in the same league.
We steadfastly held ourselves in the first half. The defense line was brilliant and our forwards were pressurizing our opponents’ defences. In such a competitive sport, it came as no surprise when tension started running high, tempers begun flaring and words flowed freely on the field when neither team managed to secure a goal. I am proud to say that our girls maintained a high standard of play and sportsmanship despite the immense pressure.
We came very close to scoring a few times. Once, with the captain racing from the back line to connect with a pass from midfield. She slotted the ball beautifully towards the goal only for it to brush very gently outside the goal post. Then another with Laura managing to execute one of her fantastic side shots, curling the ball into goals, but the goalkeeper managed to cling onto the ball. Just.
Port Melbourne certainly gave us a run for our money. They managed to ram a few shots through, some caught wonderfully by our keeper, others deflected by our stoic defenders. One particular shot slipped through our grasp only to be halted by the cross bar. Still, with only 10 players, Port Melbourne forged on and their persistence paid off. They managed to put a ball through towards the dying minutes of the game.
Although we were disappointed that the score did not accurately reflect our capabilities, we left the pitch with our heads held high, our eyes bright and our spirits strong. We played our hearts out and put up an entertaining match both for ourselves and for our loyal supporters that turned up to watch.