University edged past Woonona 2-1 at Ian McLennan Park on Sunday afternoon to ensure a place in the grand final of the Women’s Division 1. It was two second-half goals from the Unicorns with Kya Stewart sending a strong header into the corner before Zoe Kalos doubled the lead with an accurate finish. Sinead Bailey pulled one back later on in the half with a well-timed header, but it wasn’t enough for the Sharks.
It was Woonona, however, who created the first opening of the match just five minutes in with Kyah Humphrey being played into the right-hand channel inside the box and hitting a shot towards the near post which held well by Unicorns’ shot-stopper Hannah Farrugia.
University created a chance of their own in the 28th minute when Lucy Crighton was played through one-on-one with Sharks custodian Samantha Clark, but the angle was tight seeing her effort cleared away from danger. Three minutes later, the Sharks carved out a chance as Ainsley Hawes received the ball from a throw-in on the left-hand side and turned well on the left-hand edge of the box before volleying just over the crossbar. A minute later, University came forwards as Lisa Tolson was played in behind the Sharks’ defence and chose to square the ball to Lucy Crighton who saw her attempted shot blocked.
Despite both sides having opportunities to open the scoring, the sides were unable to be separated at the break.
Just six minutes into the second period, University made the breakthrough. A corner in from the right-hand side found the head of Kya Stewart who sent a bullet header into the net. Three minutes later, Woonona looked to equalise as Melissa Sale took aim from significant range seeing her effort saved.
In the 70th minute, Woonona came forwards again this time through Sinead Bailey who showed great determination to get to the byline and deliver a ball into the box which found Humphrey at the near post whose shot was saved. However, the Sharks would be left to rue missed chances as a minute later, University scored their second. A kind deflection fell at the feet of Zoe Kalos centrally on the edge of the box who calmly passed the ball beyond Clark to double the Unicorns’ lead.
With two minutes to play in the half, Woonona clawed a goal back as Sinead Bailey headed home from a freekick on the left-hand side to set up a potentially interesting finish, however, University held on to secure a place in the grand final.
University 2 (Kya Stewart 51’, Zoe Kalos 71’)
Woonona 1 (Sinead Bailey 88’)
University: 31. FARRUGIA Hannah, 2. BROWN, Rhianna, 6. KALOS Zoe, 7. BATTIN Elise, 8. TOLSON Lisa, 9. PRIOR Lisa, 10. FORD Paris, 11. STEWART Kya, 12. HEDDITCH Annalise, 13. PAGE Chantal, 14. CARTER Lexi, 15. KLENKA Jinneecka, 16. CONSTABLE Cayla, 17. CLARK Lilliana, 18. CRIGHTON Lucy, 21. POLHILL Pimwadee
Woonona: 1. CLARK Samantha, 2. LANG Georgia, 3. DAY Catherine, 4. MCNALLY Elyse, 5. BAILEY Sinead, 6. GUSS TASHA, 7. MOORE Kate, 8. HAWES Ainsley, 9. SALE Melissa, 10. HUMPHREY Kyah, 11. ROOD Tilly, 12. WALKINSHAW Hayley, 13. KABLE Le-Tisha. 14. VAN DE VOORDE Jordan, 16. MCLEOD Lindsay
Date: 18 October 2020
Venue: Ian McLennan Park
Referee: Martin Rowney
Assistant Referees: Caleb Blanch and Ruby Blanch
Report by Timothy Gibson