HONOURS EVEN DESPITE LATE DRAMA
Coniston and Corrimal played out a 1-1 draw at JJ Kelly Park on Saturday afternoon in a round six result which will do little to boost either side’s top five aspirations
The 2019 premiers won the territorial contest, however, the chances were relatively even through the 90 minutes with the two goals coming in the final five minutes of the contest.
In the 8th minute, Coniston attacker Brett Wilson had the first solid effort of the match when he got on the end of a long ball before outmuscling the two Rangers centre-backs and spraying his shot wide to the right.
Matt Tschentcher was presented with an opportunity to score his fifth of the season when he went through on goal after being played onside by Jake Morlando.
The young forward was able to maintain his footing after a challenge from goalkeeper Kaydin Harrison, but as he was about to shoot at an open goal, Morlando recovered to make a crucial last-ditch tackle.
Corrimal had a scurry of chances in the shadow of halftime with the first being a swerving 25-metre strike from Morlando which just went over the bar to the relief of Coniston goalkeeper Blake Horton.
In the 40th minute, Takao Teramoto’s cross just evaded Paul Guido lurking near the six-yard box before it came to Rick Goodchild who had his close-range effort blocked and four minutes later, Jason Zufic whipped the ball into Tim Wylie who thudded the ball against the base of the near post.
Wylie was involved in Corrimal’s first second-half chance in the 57th minute when he burst into the left of the box before cutting back to Sam Matthews who drilled his shot into a Coniston defender.
The game opened up after the 80th minute and Tschentcher and Wylie both had headers come close to finding the back of the net.
A mazing run from Tomohito Fujieda brought about the first goal after the Japanese was fouled in the box before Michael Cimino stepped up the mark to confidently dispatch the ball past Harrison.
Corrimal responded only a couple of plays later when Coniston were unable to deal with Zufic’s cross with the ball eventually making its way to substitute Matt Galanti who tapped home from close range.
Tschentcher could have claimed the three points for the home side in the dying stages when he blazed a ball over the bar, and it wasn’t his only late strike with his other one forcing Harrison into a parrying save which fell to an offside Dion Sterjovski who blasted the ball into the net.
The draw is Coniston’s third of the season and it leaves the club in ninth on six points, though, a win away to Port Kembla next weekend could see the side back into the finals fold.
Coniston coach Jeff Allport admitted the point doesn’t radically boost their top five hopes, however, he drew some solace from his side’s defensive performance.
“Draws for anybody are not good in a shortened competition like this,” Allport said.
“It feels like we have dropped points because if you take the whole game in terms of keeping possession and moving it from side to side, [Corrimal] did that very well so defensively we aimed up against what which was good.
“At the back end of the game, we got ourselves into it and got a goal and you would think that would be it but the way our season is it is never it.
“A point is something but they’re hurting in there because they know they could have won the game.”
As for Corrimal, they are only ahead of Coniston on goal difference and coach Rob Jonovski lamented his team’s lack of killer instinct.
“It’s been our way for the last few weeks,” he said.
“We have been controlling nearly all [our] games and that was another game today where we’ve controlled the majority of the game and you have got to put the chances away.
“Football is about putting the goals in and we’re not putting the goals in at the moment.”
The Rangers will look to return to the winner’s circle away to bottom-placed South Coast United next Saturday night.
Coniston 1 (Michael Cimino 85’ pen)
Corrimal 1 (Matt Galanti 87’)
Coniston: 1. HORTON Blake, 3. KAYANO Takayuki, 4. MACLOU Tyren, 5. EVANS Rory, 7. FUJIEDA Tomohito, 8. PIERRO Franc, 9. WILSON BRETT, 11. TSCHENTCHER Matt, 16. ALLPORT Boden, 18. O’NEILL Connor, 6. CIMINO Michael
Substitutes: 12. ALGAWARI Ahmed, 10. STERJOVSKI Dion (PIERRO), 33. ANDERSON Travis, 29. PONTAROLO Connor, 43. TOOLE Lachlan
Corrimal: 1. HARRISON Kaydin, 2. ZUFIC Jason, 4. GUIDO Paul, 5. MORLANDO Jake, 6. STERGIOU Lukas, 8. GOODCHILD Rick, 9. MATTHEWS Sam, 11. WYLIE Tim, 12. GROZDONOV Nicholas, 13. KYRIAKOUDES, 15. TERAMOTO Takao
Substitutes: 3. PENDER Dean (KYRIAKOUDES), 14. TYSON Zac (PENDER), 7. GALANTI Matt (TERAMOTO), 91. ZUFIC David
Date: 29 August 2020
Venue: JJ Kelly Park
Referee: Andrew Naylor
Assistant Referees: Steven Payne and Casey Flemming
Report by Dylan Arvela, on Twitter @dylanarvela
Photo by Noel Wynn