1st XI Soccer - SPC d BCC
author: Tony Beggs
St Patrick’s College 1 defeated Ballarat Clarendon College Green 0
GOALS: Josh deVoogel
BEST: Mitch Ralston, Josh DeVoogel, Alex Baker, Mark Ritchie, Jude Jeandet, Ryan Schorback, Jack Gaffney, James King, Darby Gaffney, Henry Ward
It had been a wet day and we were playing on College’s own pitch on their newly fashioned main oval and subject to foreign territory. This was the match between the two top teams and meant a lot to both schools – it basically gives the winner the easier path to the Grand Final of the BAS championship. Hence, the importance was emphasised before the start and the coach perhaps made a rather desperate call to Mark Ritchie to get inside the 18-yard box and do his thing – going down if he was infringed. Jack Gaffney may have ridiculed the call but there it was!
The game was tight from the beginning with crisp passing from our centre via Mitch Ralston finding the wingers with regularity and Alex Baker seeming to be at the end of all of their attempts to go through the centre of the park.
Jack Gaffney was a dangerous presence up forward and he looked capable of getting that cross in for the first score. Also, Henry Ward was playing the fourth man role perfectly at the back and seemed to pick up every threatening action. A couple of our players were over using the ball and having to either pass back or muff a pass up the ground, but generally we looked more dangerous. At the end of many of our forays was captain Josh deVoogel who was a consistent trouble to College and made some serious attempts on goal off the right side. College continued to attack via their larger than life centre player Zander, but our defense held tight by closing his forward movement. New addition Connor O’Connor did his part in negating his forward movement with defensive movement. Jude Jeandet’s work needs to be highlighted especially as his reading of the game was paramount in shutting down their central forward insurrections – probably even more accentuated in the second half where he was the dominant defender.
We had threatened and Josh had two near misses after being played in by the centerline but the it took a quick pass from Alex Baker to Mark Ritchie to give us that first break through. He weaved his way past the outer defense and got inside the 18-yard box moving forward menacingly only to be brought down from a desperate defender caught out of position. No one needed to watch as the inevitable spot shot from Josh deVoogel flew over the keeper’s left shoulder should he have not dived desperately to his right. A lead at 1-0 with time to play and a positive team aura at the break.
Darby Gaffney was a major concern to College during the second half as he collected passes from deep defense and set up menacing plays at the goals. James King has improved his fitness this year and he could have run out the whole game, but this was made even more obvious with his save across the opposite side of the park during one of College’s attacks. Jude Jeandet was closing or snuffing down College’s options and his delivery to out wide or safely to the line was a positive sign for future matches. Alex Worthington went forward and used his strength to find space on his left side and perhaps should have buried the possibility and he most likely will next time.
Ryan Schorback had been the go to man during a number of defensive reliefs and the keeper had consistently delivered throughout the match. However, it was the opportune that after College’s best pass on pass which set up their goals that again Ryan was in the right place. He grabbed a strike on target so cleanly that it pronounced for College that the end was nigh.