And like that, the last home and away game for the season was upon the squad.
With 13 matches under their belt, a total of 7 wins and 6 losses, CFCW faced off against Therry Penola. Finals were up for grabs. A win would likely result in a finals berth, the first in the teams history, while a loss would result in a 5th placed finish with finals out of reach.
A slow start characterized by a very flat level of energy by Canterbury saw Therry jump out to a 7 point lead at quarter time. Canterbury’s first goal a huge roost by Natasha Schiller.
The second quarter was a tightly fought affair, with goal sneak Margeaux Henschke slipping through a sneaky goal on the run. Therry answered with two further goals and took the margin out to 15 points by half time.
The second half was a very tight arm wrestle with neither team being able to wrest control of the match. Therry kicked a further goal in the third and was held goalless in the final, with the CobraW’s ultimately losing the match by 24 points in lackluster performance far from the normal football the squad has worked hard all year at producing and playing.
Loz Rinaldi and Alex Milne worked hard throughout the middle, with Kate Lucarelli working hard to get run happening off the back end of the ground.
While a very flat end to the year, the squad is to be commended for their overall season efforts and huge developmental growth they have all undergone.
Goal Kickers: R. Murray 3, T. Wooster, A. Martenstyn, S. Murphy, M. Astbury, J. Collins, R. Pearce, J. Dalzotto, N. Joss
Best Players: H. Berenger, J. Molony, R. Murray, C. Skate, J. Dalzotto, A. Wheeler
With a strong side selected and the return of some experienced senior players it was time to take on The Warriors on their home turf.
A seemingly calm day presented and plenty of sunshine would give conditions suited to some fast free flowing footy. The Westbourne side was fairly cunning and the coach would have some moves to shake things up but we just had to stick to what we have been putting together over the past few weeks and we are always a chance.
It was a tight affair early with both sides having their chances. The Warriors had capitalised early and opened up a sixteen point advantage by the end of the first quarter. Our ball movement was OK but they were having the run of the clearances.
Kicking to the scoring end in the second we had our opportunities but just couldn’t kick away with any freedom. Seven scoring shots to six should’ve seen us get closer on the scoreboard but Westbourne converted well. Trying to shut a few of their play makers out of the game was having some effect. The margin was still twenty points at half time.
Reinforcing a few key messages over the break would hopefully do the trick in the third. The boys rallied and got their skates on. In a five goal to one spell it was some of the best footy for the year for the Cobras. Westbourne were rattled and were pushing the boundaries of sportsmanship. We had managed to put them on the back foot and they didn’t respond well to it. It seemed the tide was turning. Cobras in front by five at three quarter time.
With only two on the bench for the last half an hour including our main avenue to goal, it was going to take a spirited effort to get the job done. The Warriors had other ideas. A dubious two early goals and with the aid of some sloppy at best officiating, they had their tails up. We were able to kick one against the flow but to no avail. It would end up five goals to one and a twenty one point defeat by the close of play.
The boys battled away with all they had. I was really proud of their effort and endeavour. It was not to be. The equation is still possible and with a tight run home for all those sides around the mark, chasing 3rd and 4th spots is still anyone’s guess. All we know is that we just have to beat whoever is next on the list. That starts with this week’s home game against the Falcons. Just try to control the things you can control. It’s a complete waste of energy worrying about the external factors that may or may not happen. Just focus on the next opponent and how you can play your part in getting it done.