Defensive errors cost Jacks in the Lions’ Den

Defensive errors cost Jacks in the Lions’ Den

Posted on April 17, 2016 in 'Reports'

ECU Joondalup have been beaten 3-0 by Stirling Lions at Macedonia Park on Saturday afternoon in week 5 of the PS4 National Premier League WA.

ECU had their chances, the best fell to Gordon Smith who held off two Lions defenders before racing clear rounding the keeper, but the Scottish striker fired wide. But goals to Robert Petkov, Teeboy Kamara and Daniel Micevski gave the home side the points. “We didn’t defend well enough second half, we had controlled most of the game but we weren’t clinical in front of goal,” ECU Coach Dale McCulloch said. “I thought Gordy’s goal was onside, we were right in line with it. That would have made it 1-1 and it could have been a different game, we haven’t had the rub of the green with decisions like that, but we move on.”

Pushing late in the game cost them two late goals but the Coach said that is the way his side plays. “Yes we left a few gaps late on looking for the equaliser and we’re a sort of team that tries to get the most out of every game, we don’t want to sit back when we are one nil down,” he said. “We pushed forward but unfortunately we made a couple of errors at the back, which we have to improve on.”

The Jacks gave a first team debut to keeper Scott Wallis, and they made the better start and Shane Cassidy got back with a fantastic last ditch tackle to deny Steven McGarry after only three minutes, before Gordon Smith’s long-range effort flashed wide. Lions hit back and debutant ECU keeper Scott Wallis was alert to save David Micevski’s shot moments later, but on 16 minutes it was ECU who should have hit the front. Smith shrugged off two Lions defenders and raced clear, he rounded keeper John Perkins, but with the goal at his mercy he fired wide.

Wallis then produced a good reaction save to stop David Micevski’s deflected shot as the home side pushed forward. The pitch wasn’t the best and large areas of sand made passing football difficult, but it didn’t stop the Lions hitting the front ten minutes from half time. David Micevski’s in-swinging corner was flicked on by Graham Doran and Petkov finished at the back post.

Both sides had good early chances in the second half. First David Micevski’s snap shot from the edge of the penalty area flashed wide of the target, before Bayley Brown-Montgomery long-range shot was saved low by Perkins. It should have been 2-0 on 67 minutes, Blamo Qua Qua through ball sent David Micevski clear one-on-one with Wallis, but the ECU custodian stood tall and the midfielder fired wide of the target.

ECU thought they had levelled two minutes later, McGarry sent Smith racing clear of a tiring Stirling defence, the Scottish striker finished clinically, only for the linesman’s flag to be raised for offside. It was a close thing, but to run salt into the wounds the striker was booked for kicking the ball away. ECU were really pressing now and on 75 minutes they went close to the equaliser. McGarry’s deep corner picked out the unmarked Ollie Annis at the back post, but his headed flicked off the post and sailed wide.

But the game was put to bed by the Lions with two goals in as many minutes. First on 81 minutes ECU defenders Ryan Lowry and Shane Pickering challenged for the same ball and the ball fell to second half substitute Jason Rubidge, who fed Kamara who made no mistake. Then two minutes later, Kamara was the supplier for the third. His quick counter attack ended with a ball to Daniel Micevski, who finished low past Wallis to seal the points.

In the earlier games ECU under 18’s drew 1-1 with Stirling Lions, and they had to do it with 10 men. Thomas Hough scored for the Jacks but the Lions levelled and Luke Rhodes was sent off. The young lads battled hard to come away with a hard fought point. The Under 20’s moved up to sixth place on the table after 3-1 win against Stirling Lions. The goal scorers were a brace from James owen and another to Stefan Vranesvic. Debutant keeper Daniel Hodgkinson saved a penalty when the score was 2-1, and the youngster impressed on his full debut for the club after moving from Sorrento last week.

Stirling Lions 3 (Petkov 35 mins, Kamara 81, Daniel Micevski 83) v ECU Joondalup 0

Stirling Lions: GK John PERKINS 2 Michael PUGLIESE (16 Abdul SESAY 54’), 4 Blamo QUA QUA, 5 Graham DORAN (7 Miki VUJACIC 89’), 6 Brodie MARTIN (C), 8 David SESAY 9 Robert PETKOV (12 Jason RUBIDGE 80’), 10 Daniel MICEVSKI, 11 David MICEVSKI, 15 Shane CASSIDY, 17 Teeboy KAMARA – Subs not used: RGK Lance ALAVAKIS – Yellow Cards: Doran 12’, Cassidy 29’, Pugliese 43’

ECU Joondalup: GK Scott WALLIS, 2 Ryan LOWRY, 3 Joseph JONES, 4 Shane PICKERING, 5 Andy HIGGINS, 7 Harley ORR (13 Ollie ANNIS 64’), 8 Steven WALMSLEY, 10 Gordon SMITH, 11 Bayley BROWN-MONTGOMERY (12 Paddy DOYLE 79’), 14 Steven MCGARRY, 18 Henry DURR – Subs not used: RGK Todd HOYLE, 15 Coire MCGUIGAN, 16 Josh TUCKER – Yellow Cards: Orr 27’, McGarry 48’, Smith 65’, Jones 70’, Higgins 79’

Referee: Josh Mannella