12/04/14 – State 2SE – Round 3
Mooroolbark 2-2 Old Scotch
Mooroolbark: Brett Tronconi (29), Mario Cauteruccio (pen 88)
Old Scotch: Terence Dougan (52), Nicholas Jarman (90)
After 2 games, 4 sides had maximum points in the division. Two of them faced off at a warm, breezy Esther Park saw Barkers (3rd) host Old Scotch (4th). Barkers named the same side for the third game in a row, and Havercroft was marking his 50th game.
Scotch drew first blood with a shot over the bar from close range in the 2nd minute. Barkers were seeing plenty of the ball without threatening the Scotch goal. Just before the quarter hour, Christoforou won the ball in midfield. He found Dube on the left, whose low cross-cum-shot was held by Toulson in the Scotch goal. On 28 minutes, a Cauteruccio corner on the right was headed clear to D.Adams, whose low shot was defected for a corner on the left. D.Adams delivered a beautiful ball to the far post, where Tronconi rose like a crippled salmon and dived low to head home for 1-0 Barkers.
Four minutes later, a long Scotch ball found Koumantatakis in space on the left. His low shot was not held, but Killen cleared the loose ball. Six minutes later, a high ball in from Scotch’s right was missed by Havercroft, leaving Koumantatakis to head wide. Then just before the break, D.Adams won a 50-50 header and played a 1-2 with Brickell before whipping in a low cross, but Scotch cleared. Both sides had free kicks saved before half-time, which saw Barkers go in 1-0 up in a lively half for both sides.
Six minutes into the second half, Scotch had a corner on the left. When he ball came in, a huge leap (Tronconi-esque in its gracefulness) from Dougan saw him head the ball down and past Havercroft for the equaliser at 1-1. Barker replied when Brickell collected the ball from a throw-in and laid back for Cauteruccio. He whipped the ball in for D.Adams to hit a snap volley just over. Barkers then had a scare just before the hour when Tronconi was caught in possession by Shearer, who cut inside before being tripped, but Shearer himself curled the kick wide.
Barkers were now conceding numerous free kicks, from one of which Dougan almost doubled his tally when he headed wide. Then Barkers’ Holly attacked down the right and delivered a peach of a ball for Brickell to glance wide. Next up, D.Adams turned his man beautifully, but having done the hard bit, sliced his shot.
I remember years ago when Andy Gray scored the lowest header in the world for Everton against Notts County. When Holly delivered the ball in from the right to the far post, Killen tried to emulate Gray, but the ball wouldn’t budge.
The game seemed set for a draw then, until, as Barkers attacked, D.Adams was pushed inside the box, miles off the ball. This gave Cauteruccio the chance to stick the penalty to the keeper’s left for 2-1 Barkers, 2 minutes left and the vocal chords were warming up for yet another home win. However, remember State 2 is at least 1 step up from State 4, and Scotch were not quite done yet.
In the last minute, Scotch won a corner on the right. A good ball was delivered to the far post, and Jarman headed an almost carbon copy of the first equaliser to make the final score 2-2. This was a good physical battle which neither side deserved to lose. Both sides move up 1 place to 2nd and 3rd. Barkers now have a week off before the trip to Doveton (1st), who are now the only team with a 100% record – 1st v 2nd!
Mooroolbark: Robert Havercroft, Alex Holly, Liam Killen, Brett Tronconi, Yiannis Christoforou, Mario Cauteruccio, Nhlanhla Dube, Taury Adams, David Brickell, Brechan Adams, Luke House. Subs used: Daine Adams, Matthew Payne.
Old Scotch: James Toulson, Steven Carroll, Terence Dougan, James Fitzgerald, Sean O’Brien, Wayne Dalton, Patrick Rechsteiner, Samuel Shearer, Nicholas Koumantatakis, Lasse Jorgensen, Nicholas Jewitt. Subs used: Anthony Orsini, Nicholas Jarman.