Cool Ridge Cup dream still alive for ECU

Cool Ridge Cup dream still alive for ECU

Posted on May 16, 2014 in 'Reports'

ECU Joondalup qualified for the State Cup semi-final with a resounding 3-1 win over Balcatta in extra-time at the ECU Football Arena.

Although Balcatta drew first blood via James Sammut, the home team fought their way back in with Jake Benson-Cooper equalising before Charlie Comyn-Platt and Tommy Amphlett completed the comeback. “We have been working extremely hard in training to ensure our shape and our football philosophy is still evident with the players,” said winning coach Dale McCulloch, whose team came into the game on the back of four successive losses in the league.

It took Balcatta just 7 minutes to go in front, Sammut converting at close-range after the loose ball from an Andy Banks’ parry landed at his feet. Joondalup didn’t get into gear until the hour when Benson-Cooper seized on a loose ball and tucked past goalkeeper Simon Madaschi to bring the sides level. With this the northerners swung into action with Amphlett and David Foster working tirelessly to open up their opponents’ defences. As tensions mounted Joondalup coach Dale McCulloch was order from the technical area by referee Steven Gregory after his emotions got the better of him.

A fumble by Madaschi two minutes into extra-time was all the invitation Comyn-Platt needed to tap Joondalup ahead following a Jon Higgins’ free-kick. Balcatta fought back but Benny Kouakou could only angle into the side netting while the addition of Adam Tong to the attack served to intensify the pressure on Banks, who stood up to the task. The game was eventually made safe by Amphlett on the counterattack, the livewire striker volleying in from the edge of the area after 116 minutes to finish a tidy counterattack in which Foster played the ball forward.

ECU Joondalup – GK Andy BANKS, 2 Jack McMaster (15 Genaveo HUMAN 50’)(16 Ryan McDARBY 96’) 3 Jon HIGGINS, 4 Charlie COMYN-PLATT, 5 Ryan TOWNSEND, 6 Jon STYNES 8 Joe SMITH, 9 David FOSTER, 10 Andy HIGGINS (12 Dejan SPASESKI 14’), 13 Tommy AMPHLETT, 14 Jake BENSON-COOPER  Subs not used – RGK Ramiro LESCANO, 17 Jack CAIRNS

Yellow cards: Dejan SPASESKI 52’

Balcatta – GK Simon MADASCHI, 2 David CYRUS ,5 Adam TONG, 6 Luke RANDAZZO (16 Ben MEREDITH 69’), 7 James SAMMUT, 8 Matt BROOK, 19 Gustavo CATARCIONE, 14 Benny KOUAKOU, 15 Marc DE FRANCESCH, 17 Kieran COLWELL (10 Matt IZZO 105’), 20 Patrick QUINN (9 Carlo COELHO 37’) – Subs not used – RGK Damien STANOESVSKI, 18 Josh MAROCCHI

Yellow cards: Matt BROOK 86’

Referee: Steven Gregory