Wollongong Olympic overcame last week’s struggles with a gutsy 2-0 win against league leaders Albion Park White Eagles at Terry Reserve on Sunday afternoon.
After copping a 7-1 smashing from Bulli last Saturday, Olympic got back on track courtesy of goals to Rick Goodchild and Tynan Diaz.
It was a reserved start from both teams, with neither looking to give anything away early on.
In the 13th minute, Park’s Cameron Morgan drove into the left of the box before the ball found Brendan Griffin at the edge of the box, firing just wide of the left post.
The side had another chance 10 minutes later when Joshua MacDonald took on a long-range free-kick that flew narrowly over the bar.
However, midway through the half, Olympic sprung forward and got themselves a penalty after Chris Price was bundled over inside the box. Goodchild stepped up and found the left side of the net with White Eagles’ goalkeeper Hayden Durose diving the other way.
Albion Park almost responded four minutes later but Liam Wille’s effort from the edge of the box rolled straight to Justin Pasfield in the Olympic goal.
The visitors took their slender lead into halftime with the potential to blow the title race wide open.
Park began the second half purposefully and almost equalised inside a minute with Cameron Morgan’s shot cleared off the line.
The side had another chance in the 67th minute when Christopher Nathaniel saw his strike from outside the box held onto by Olympic goalkeeper Justin Pasfield.
Despite the hosts’ pressure, Wollongong Olympic doubled their advantage just a couple of minutes later. A cross in from the left met Andre Takami at the far post who drew a superb stop from Durose. The ball fell to Diaz though, who managed to poke it over the line to give his team a strong lead in the game.
As Albion Park continued to commit numbers forward, the away side were able to exploit space on the counter attack.
In the 79th minute, Diaz looked to catch Durose out with a lobbed shot from halfway, but the goalkeeper was able to palm it over the top.
Goodchild also went close three minutes later as his powerful shot from the edge of the box barely missed the right post.
Olympic saw out the remaining time to claim a big victory at the top of the Illawarra Premier League.
Report by Timothy Gibson, on Twitter @Timg123_
Photos courtesy of Kiah Hufton