First Grade: Inter Lions 1-3 South Coast Flame

Match report written by FNSW

South Coast Flame FC recorded a 3-1 win against a spirited Inter Lions side at Majors Bay Reserve in this week’s Match of the Round.

Inter Lions battled hard in the game but were unable to convert their chances. The hosts did get a goal back through Marissa Papoulidis to make it 2-1. Coach Adrian Contarino remained upbeat despite the loss as the side are finding their feet in recent weeks.

For South Coast Flame FC it was nice for them to get back in the winner’s circle after a lean few weeks. Jessica Cruickshank fired home a second half brace alongside a good strike from Sariah Wilson to take the points.

Both teams were aiming to get back inside the winner’s circle on a cool afternoon in Sydney’s inner west and the midfields went to work trying to establish their dominance.

The first chance of the contest fell to Inter Lions. From a dangerous corner it fell to Natalie Marchese who stepped inside her defender then blasted her effort over the bar.

Inter Lions were the dominant side in the first half and looked to find the opening goal but their best chance fell to Jess Wootton who blazed over the bar.

It was a first half where chances were rare between two sides. South Coast Flame FC’S best chance fell to Rachelle Wang. She charged down the right wing before hitting one onto the post then out as the teams went to the break, 0-0.

Coming out of the break, Flame were feeling just fine. Alexis Malizis was on the end of a good sequence from the visitors but prodded her effort wide of the post.

It didn’t take long for South Coast Flame FC to find the opener. A direct ball which lofted over the Lions defence went into the path of Jessica Cruickshank. She composed herself and slotted home to make it 1-0 for the Flame.

Stung by conceding, Inter Lions sprung into action. Marissa Papoulidis had a shot which went right at the Flame custodian. Next, Wootton had a free-kick in a dangerous area but she also directed it straight at the keeper.

As the game continued to open up, South Coast Flame FC started to rack up the chances through Caley Tallon-Henniker and Cruickshank both had efforts which weren’t able to find the back of the net.

Cruickshank made up for her earlier miss with her second goal of the contest in the 69th minute. She thrashed home from a narrow angle which made it 2-0 Flame.

Inter Lions showed impressive resolve to pull a goal back four minutes later. A mix up between the Flame defenders created the space for Marissa Papoulidis to tap home and make it 2-1 and bring them back into the contest.

The Flame extinguished their comeback with a third goal in the contest. Sariah Wilson strode through the midfield and finished strongly to make it 3-1 and give the visitors all three points to take back to the south coast.

Speaking afterwards, Inter Lions coach Adrian Contarino remained upbeat about his side despite the result as they start the building blocks for the team:

“We came out firing with high intensity with a lot of possession. We didn’t capitialise on our chances and when you do that it will come back to bite you. We got a bit deflated and our first touch let us down which let them capitalise.” said Contarino.

For South Coast Flame FC coach Daniel Naumovski, he was delighted to get back into the winner’s circle in what was a tough contest to round off the midway mark:

“It was a good game. They came out in the first half and battled hard. We got the job done in the second half with some good combination play. Its good to get back in the winner’s circle. it will be a good lead into the next battles to get into the top five.” said Naumovski.

Player of the week: Ebony Freeman

Outstanding performance against Inter lions.

U/20: Inter Lions 3-1 South Coast Flame

South Coast Flame traveled to Inter Lions hoping to springboard off their strong win last weekend and keep themselves in touch with the top half of the table.

The game started with Flame keeping possession and moving the home side across the field with tidy one-touch combinations breaking down the opposition. Chances fell to Ava Parry and Lili Rosandic but both shots found the gloves of the Lions’ keeper.

Then against the run of play, a lack of pressure on the ball resulted in a long ball over the top of the Flame backline which was not dealt with by the South Coast defenders and goalkeeper. The Lions’ striker chipping the stranded South Coast goalkeeper to give the home side the lead.

South Coast picked themselves back up and within minutes had a penalty after Beth Neilsen was brought down inside the area. Brooke Love stepped up and calmly converted the spot kick to level the score.

The remainder of the half was scrappy from both sides and with 15 seconds left on the clock, a Flame defensive mistake lead to the Inter striker being face-to-face with Tahlia Sharrock. Sharrock making the first collapsing save at the strikers feet, however the spilled save was calmly put away by the Inter forward to give the home side the lead once again right on the stroke of half time.

The second half was the opposite of the first; this time Inter were in control of the ball and the ones playing with confidence. South Coast struggled to get out of their own half and create any clear cut chances. With 10 minutes remaining, yet another Flame defensive error lead to the Inter forward having another one-on-one opportunity with Sharrock, who was unable to keep out the shot. Inter Lions running away 3-1 winners.

South Coast Flame confronted with the reality again, that if you give an opposition three goal scoring chances on a silver platter, it will always be difficult to get any points from the contest.

Player of the week: Bethany Horton

Bethany has been the player in-form for the last month as she has made a positional move to centre-back. Her timing of tackles and ability to retain possession has been a highlight. Bethany was rewarded for her recent performances against Inter Lions with her first grade debut where she demonstrated she is up to the standard and challenge of first grade football.



14 Girls: Inter Lions 1-2 South Coast Flame 

Majors Bay Reserve was the venue for a cool, windy, morning fixture between Inter Lions and the South Coast Flame.

The Flame started brightly and loooked to have some early success through switches of play. Zali Oliver and Caelin Rogers were a constant threat and the latter was narrowly denied in the 8th minute. Despite finding in-roads towards the Lions goal, the Flame would find themselves behind when a shot from a narrow angle squirmed its way into the back of the net. This seemed to deflate the visitors who really struggled to regain their hold on the game. Inter began to dictate the tempo of the game before the sides entered the break.

The second half saw some tactical changes and adjustment in how the Flame planned on getting back into the game. This had an instant impact as Isabella Nitor popped up in the box to poke the ball home, just two minutes into the second half. This lightning start to the second half continued as the Flame would complete the turn-around just six minutes later when Caelin Rogers broke back line with a well timed run and finished into the bottom left corner. From this point on, it looked as though there would only be one winner. The South Coast girls were solid in defence and controlled the game with the ball. Considering the recent challenges that this squad has been faced with, incredible resilience was shown as well as great determination to get themselves back into the game and ultimately upset the home side.

Player of the week: Zali Oliver

Zali’s effort was incredible on game day. She was excellent in executing her player task of stretching the opposition. It was a long day for the Inter full back as Zali frequently looked to make runs in behind and relished the physical battle.

15 Girls: Inter Lions 0-0 South Coast Flame

A cool, breezy morning welcomed the South Coast Flame to Majors Bay Reserve for Round 15, the official half-way point of our competition.

The 15’s girls welcomed back several players from illness and injury, after being decimated the past couple of weeks. U/14’s attacking midfielder Bella Elsner once again featured in the starting line up and is growing as a player week-by-week.

Players on limited minutes forced several changes throughout the first half, with 14’s players Shaelyn Petkovski and Eliza Bell featuring heavily for our squad.

The Flame were definitely the better side but once again were unable to find the back of the net. The best chance of the half coming in the 31st minute, after a brilliant corner from Indiana Garvin found the boot of Ebony Winston. Winston connected with the volley sweetly and thought that she had her first goal for the club, but unfortunately rattled the cross bar.

The Flame continued to push on to find a break through in the second half, and had to be wary of the Inter counter attacks as this was their greatest threat. 

With time running out, a few tactical changes saw the Flame push more players up front in hope of a winner. Despite creating plenty of chances to find a goal, the side undeservingly finished with only a point in a 0-0 draw.

There were plenty of positives to take out of the overall performance, considering that this team hasn’t played together as one team for several weeks due to illness and injury throughout the squad.

Player of the week: Sienna Tripp

Moving into an attacking midfield role for this weeks game, Sienna dictated the play and was always dangerous on the ball. Her link up with her attacking midfield partner in Bella Elsner was a highlight of the game, and Sienna has shown her ability to be a game changer. 

16 Girls: Inter Lions 2-2 South Coast Flame

Mild conditions at Majors Bay reserve welcomed the South Coast Flame for an away fixture against Inter Lions.

The Flame looked to show their intent from the kick off as they controlled the flow of the game and dictated the tempo through creating overloads in midfield. This dominance resulted in controlled possession outside the opposition penalty area for large periods. Despite shots coming from Sam Shallcross, Gemma Bishop and Maddison Day, the scores remained at 0-0. Against the run of play, Inter Lions broke free on the right hand side of the field and a mis-hit cross somehow found a way into the right hand side of the goal to put the home side ahead in the 20th minute. The Flame didn’t really recover for the rest of the half and entered the break a goal down.

The second half began as the first did, with the Flame the agressors and looking to find ways to score. The goal came quickly as Maddison Day found the roof of the net following a corner. 10 minutes later, the Flame would find themselves in front as Gemma Bishop’s shaped pass beat the backline and Sam Shallcross beat the keeper. This would see the tone of the game shift as the Flame became paitient in possession. The Lions didnt look like getting back into the contest, but a 30-yard shot was deemed to have struck a Flame player’s hand in the 18-yard box and a penalty was awarded. The penalty was dispatched into the top corner to make it 2-2. Despite pushing for a winner, it was not to be as the Lions held on for a point.

Player of the week: Mackenzie Webb

Mackenzie has had some recent struggles with injury and illness but upon her return, is going from strength to strength. Her powerful, direct runs were a constant threat for the opposition regardless of the position she played in. She can count herself unlucky not to get on the score sheet


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