First Grade: South Coast Flame 1-1 Nepean FC
Nepean were travelling to The Furnace in form and with some good results against the league’s heavy hitters.
The girls were aware of this and were up for the challenge. The first half was dominated by the Flame girls with the bulk of possession being held in the opponents half. Half chances to Caley Tallon-Henniker, Jess Cruickshank and Rachelle Wang could not be capitalised on after good combination play between the Flame’s midfielders.
Nepean were stubborn and desperate in defence and were only held out by an inspirational performance by their goalkeeper.
The Flame came out in the second half looking to consolidate their goal scoring opportunities. They came from elite level crosses into the final third by Caitlin Russel and Kelly McIntyre across the back line, who together got Alexis Malizis in for a 1-on-1 with the goal keeper.
The score remained 0-0 until early into the 80th minute. Excellent combination play down the right hand side had Tallon-Henniker running at the Nepean defence. She zipped passed two and rifled a cut-back cross across the keeper for the debutant Lulu Lozano, who calmly finished in the bottom corner.
The Flame worked hard in defence but could not keep Nepean out. Their striker was able to beat multiple defenders to shoot within the 18 yard box to level the game. It wasn’t meant to be for the Flame girls this week and a draw was the final result.
Player of the week: Kellie McIntyre
Kellie had an outstanding performance
U/20: South Coast Flame 8-0 Nepean FC
South Coast Flame were looking to bounce back after their disappointing result last weekend with a struggling Nepean side visiting the Furnace for the first time.
The visitors were in shock at how fast the Flame started this match. Emily Kostovski found herself in open space on three minutes to give South Coast the lead. Flame kept the pressure on as Ava Parry and debutant Lulu Lozano went close with their own chances soon after.
It was the Flame debutant Lozano who eventually doubled the lead as she broke through the Nepean defence on 23 minutes, nutmegging the oncoming goalkeeper with finesse.
On the half hour mark, Emily Kostovski got her second of the game as she calmly placed the ball into an open net after a Nepean goalkeeping error, giving Flame a 3-0 lead. Play was stopped for a short period of time as an ambulance attended to an injured Flame player who suffered an unfortunate head injury earlier in the half.
As the ambulance left, the second half started and Flame went to another level. The Nepean goalkeeper was kept busy by the frightening front three of Kostovski, Parry and Lozano who were relentless in their attack.
However, it was the super-sub of Mia Riza who entered the field on 57 minutes to take the game beyond all doubt. Riza scoring a tap in from six yards with her first touch on 59 minutes before scoring a similar tap in from a Kostovski cut back on 71 minutes.
On 78 minutes, a Lili Rosandic corner found Isabella Coppola on the edge of the penalty area whose first shot was blocked by the rushing Nepean defence, but Coppola followed up her own shot and smashed in the rebound to make the score 6-0.
Flame were not finished, as Mia Riza took centre stage again as she beat two defenders before slotting her shot past the Nepean shot-stopper to complete her hat-trick. There was still more to come from Riza as she got on the end of another Rosandic corner and headed home her fourth of the game to confirm an 8-0 South Coast Flame win.
A tremendous bounce back from the girls who made football look simple and showed to everyone that on their day, they can score goals at will.
Player of the week: Kate Gorham
In an 8-0 win it is usually the goal scorers who get all the plaudits, but without the courageous and disciplined defending from Kate Gorham, none of these goals would have been possible. Kate won nearly every duel she encountered and even threw in some last-ditch diving tackles for good measure to ensure her side kept a clean sheet.
16 Girls: South Coast Flame 5-0 Nepean FC
After a couple of frustrating draws, the Flame were firing again as Nepean visited Ian Maclennan Park.
Nepean had barely gotten out of the sheds before the Flame struck with their first. Gemma Bishop played a delicate volley in behind to set Maddison Day 1-on-1 with the goalkeeper, the striker obliged and slotted the ball into the bottom left corner just 90 seconds into the game.
Killer passes were the theme of the day as the Flame frequently managed to make progressive passes in both wide and central areas. The only surprise so far was that it took until the 28th minute for the girls to add their second. Mackenzie Webb’s corner found Leila Maddox at the near post who showed freak awareness to flick the ball on for Day to score her second. Despite a flurry of further corners, the score stayed at 2-0 as the sides entered the break.
The second half started in very similar fashion to the first as just 50 seconds into the half, a neat combination found the feet of Chelsea Newell in a wide area who cut the ball back to Bishop, who took one touch to control and one to bury the ball in the bottom left corner.
The dominance in midfield was really starting to show and an expertly weighted pass from Samantha Shallcross would ensure that Day completed her hattrick with a well placed finish past the onrushing goalkeeper.
With the seconds ticking down and the visitors clearly deflated, the Flame were still willing to press from the front which resulted in what could be considered a goal of the season contender. Lili Rosandic rolled the ball to Bishop whose 25-yard strike hit the top left apex of the goal and subsequently the back of the net for her second of the match.
This was a lethal performance from our girls who once again showed that they can compete with some of the top sides in the competition.
Player of the week: Maddison Day
Maddi had spent the week adjusting the way in which she times her runs to get in beyond the opposition. This was clear on game day as she had much more success avoiding the offside trap. A hattrick is an impressive, although deserved reward as she troubled the opposition from the first minute.
15 Girls: South Coast Flame 0-2 Nepean FC
It was a clear, sunny Saturday morning at Ian McLennan Park as the Flame 15’s girls looked to back up their big win last weekend with another strong game against Nepean FC.
Unfortunately, this game was anything but strong for the Flame. Nepean started the better of the two sides from the first whistle, and were allowed to run and play around our girls at will.
Flame considered themselves lucky throughout the first half as Nepean had several chances in front of our goal that were not taken.
Nepean were allowed to play at their own will as our girls failed to pick up their players in defence, with several balls being played in behind the back line from players who were given all the time in the world on the ball.
Nepean were rewarded for their first half display with a goal in the 24th minute, and we could not say that it wasn’t deserved.
Half time came around and the Flame were given a reality check from Nepean in the first half. The girls needed a much improved performance in the second half.
For the first five minutes of the second half, Flame responded well to the half time messages and began to implement the game plan. Unfortunately, this did not last long and the Flame went back into their ways from the first half.
Nepean were rewarded with a second goal in the 60th minute, after absolutely no defensive pressure was given to the Nepean player on the edge of our 18-yard box. The Nepean player was able to unleash a venomous shot which went top corner as our defensive effort gave our goalkeeper no chance.
The score would finish 2-0, in what was the Flame’s most disappointing performance of the year after a great win the week before.
Player of the week: Lola Garcia
In a game where attitude all around the park was poor for the Flame, Lola Garcia continued to put in 100% effort in attack and defence. Her energy down our right flank was much needed in a game where energy was lacking for the Flame. A bright spark in a disappointing team performance.
14 Girls: South Coast Flame 1-2 Nepean FC
Off the back of a pair of wins, the Flame welcomed Nepean to Ian Maclennan Park.
It was clear from quite early on that this game would be won and lost in the midfield. For the first 10 minutes, it was clear that the Flame were winning this battle and holding sustained possession in the opposition half. This period involved some neat combination play between Isabella Elsner and Shaelyn Petkovski as well as consistent recycling of possession through Eliza Bell.
The early pressure was rewarded as an Amalia Harb corner found the feet of Samantha Cowie, who made no mistake in laying the ball off to Caelin Rogers who struck first time to be beat the keeper and score her third in two weeks. The Flame would go close again through Harb but entered the break with a one goal advantage.
The second half saw a more direct approach from our opponents who began to ask more questions of the Flame during the transition moments.
Mila Davidovic bailed the girls out on numerous occasions with her ability to recover and clear the ball.
After an injury to a Flame player, the girls struggled to refocus and a Nepean player broke the defensive line to equalise. With just 10 minutes to play, both sides began to fatigue and a draw looked likely. That was before Nepean snatched the lead with a well struck freekick just outside the penalty area. Despite some tactical adjustments to try and find an equaliser, it was not to be and Nepean would be travelling home the happier.
Player of the week: Mila Davidovic
Mila has shown great improvements in her awareness of defensive situations. Her ability to read the opposition body shape and anticipate where the next ball will be played has been impressive. This was on full display on game day as she positioned herself correctly to snuff out numerous attempted killer passes.
Well done Mila!