ECU let the lead slip at Stirling

ECU let the lead slip at Stirling

Posted on June 29, 2013 in 'Reports'

ECU Joondalup’s losing streak continued after a 3-1 defeat at joint-league leaders Stirling Lions at Macedonia Park.
A goal after only five minutes from Jon Stynes gave Joondalup the lead, but goals from Moses Kalau (2) and Scott Bulloch gave the home side the points, in an action-packed encounter. Caretaker Coach Syd Amphlett was happy with the performance but said they were beaten by a better team on the day. “It’s been a tough week for the lads, following Salv’s departure. But it wasn’t helped with the injuries to Andy and John Higgins, Joe Smith and suspensions to Dale McCulloch and Shaun Timmins, but at the end of the day we were beaten by a better team,” explained Amphlett. “The young lad Kalau was outstanding for the Lions, but saying that we had two, 16-year-old’s in the starting line-up today, with another three on the bench so it was good experience for them today.”

The day began positively enough for Joondalup with Stynes tapping in at close-range after getting on the end of Tanner Selyer’s defence splitting pass in the 5th minute. Stirling responded by stepping up a gear across the middle of the park where the creativity of Bulloch, Gareth McGlynn and Sam Fusik was unlocking Joondalup’s defence time and time again. Phil Arnold should have opened the hosts account but instead slammed into the underside of the crossbar at close-range following a McGlynn corner, and a few minutes later the striker’s scuffed shot beat Andy Banks but lacked to power required to cross the line before Tommy Jones made the clearance.

Stirling’s assault was never-ending as shots from Arnold, Matt Harold and Clayton Arnez whistled past the upright. Bulloch put a blistering his shot on-target only to find Banks standing firm. The equaliser finally arrived in the 32nd minute, Kalau turning Jack Oldham before letting fly from 23-metres with a curling effort that earned the accolade of all at the ground, irrespective of which team they supported. Stirling were soon back on the attack, Bulloch threading into the path of Arnold whose shot flashed the post. Half-time was just a minutes away when Arnold turned provider for Bulloch to finish into the bottom corner to give them the lead at the break.

It looked as though the floodgates were about to open when Clayton Arnez’s quality ball sent Kalau on a mesmerising run, the attacker rounding Banks to slot in from an acute angle with 49 minutes on the clock. Joondalup rallied and soon after Selyer caused a few nervous moments for the home side but Aleks Vrteski moved sharply to leave his opponent frustrated. After that, the familiar pattern established in the first 45 minutes returned with Stirling dominating both possession and territory. Some of the combination play between Bulloch, McGlynn, Kalau and Arnold was mesmerising, and the hosts would justifiably have been disappointed not to have added a few more goals before the final whistle sounded.

Stirling Lions 3 (Kalau 32’, 49’, Bulloch 44’)

ECU Joondalup 1 (Stynes 7‘)

Saturday, June 15th 2013

Macedonia Park, Stirling

Kick-off: 3pm

Referee: Joe Fusari

Assistant referees: N. Hoyle, C. Irvine

Crowd: Appx 350

Stirling Lions: 1. Aleks VRTESKI (c), 3. Clayton ARNEZ, 16. Phil ARNOLD, 10. Scott BULLOCH, 4. James COGLY, 11. Dennis GALAN, 6. Mathew HAROLD, 13. Moses KALAU, 14. Gareth McGLYNN, 2. Michael PUGLIESE (7. Josh BOOYSEN 34’, 8. Ben MEREDITH 67’), 12. Sam FUZIK (5. Timothy HILL 88’) – Substitutes not used: 9. Ryan McDARBY, 20. Campbell CONNOR

Yellow cards: Pugliese 30’, Bulloch 86’

ECU Joondalup: 1. Andy BANKS, 3. Jack OLDHAM (12. Gareth CRAWLEY 88’), 2. Tommy JONES, 13. Ryan LOWRY, 8. Matt ITALIANO, 7. Joe KNOWLES (14. Joe SMITH 88’), 9. Tanner SELYER 5. Jon STYNES, 10. Tommy AMPHLETT, 11. Tony TAYLOR (17. Dejan SPASESKI 68’), 15. Scott BLACKMORE (c) – Substitutes not used: RGK. Tim DOYLE

Yellow cards: Nil