Man Chest Hair United exacted revenge over Peakaroos in the Mixed Indoor Soccer grand final at the youth centre last Wednesday night.
The two teams came face to face for their second successive indoor soccer competition grand final with Man Chest Hair United winning this encounter 5-2.
(Peakaroos won the title last season after they beat Man Chest Hair United 3-1 in August.)
The game was full of action and injuries with Man Chest Hair United recording the first causality in the opening minute of the game with Jade Buckman hitting the floor hard and suffering a shoulder injury.
Buckman left the court to receive first aid which left his side one player short until he returned to play seven minutes later.
Peakaroos’ dynamic player Matthew Stevens capitalized on the disruption to the game and also a numbers overlap to net a quick goal and give Peakaroos a 1-0 early lead.
Buckman returned to the court carrying his shoulder and for the remainder of the match played an out of character, very tentative game.
Ben Anderson slotted in a goal from the sideline to put the Peakaroos up two goals midway through the first half.
Bianka Jacobson was threatening at the goal for Man Chest Hair United and her attempted shot that glanced off the top corner post would have evened up the game.
Another certain goal from Jacobson looked set to find its mark, however Peakaroos’ goalie, Christos Karageorgos, was in sensational form and wasn’t letting the ball get past him.
Down at the other end of the court, Man Chest Hair United’s goalie, Kym Sutton was also doing a great job deflecting everything that Peakaroos threw at her.
Stevens was all over the court dominating play for Peakaroos until just before half time he too succumbed to an injury after a mid air collision with his goalie and was forced to retire injured.
The kafuffle resulted in an own goal to bring the margin to 2-1 in Peakaroos’ favour.
When Stevens left the court, Peakaroos had the luxury of a couple of bench players to fill the gap, however none could match Stevens’ earlier intensity and enthusiasm for the game.
Man Chest Hair United, led in the mid court by Josh Brown, launched a couple of attacking raids and fired off a number of shots at goal, including a great header by Ben Turton, but all just missed their mark.
Peakaroos went to the half time break with a narrow 2-1 lead.
Not long after the re-start, Jacobson was again looking menacing at goal, however she could not once again get the ball past Peakaroos goal keeper, Karageorgos.
James Egan took over the dominant mid court role for the Peakaroos and his impressive second half performance earned him the Player of the Grand Final honour as judged by the game’s referees Marc Cummins and Jason Foster.
Egan and Man Chest Hair United’s Josh Brown battled it out for possession all up and down the court with a number of very physical tackles made by both players.
Brown was persistent in looking for scoring opportunities for his side and the goal that evened up the scores came from a powerful kick from Buckman close to half way which landed in the corner of the net to level the score to 2-all.
A team effort resulted in their next goal, a double pointer from Jacobson. (Female goals are worth two points.)
Brown passed to Buckman who sent a deft cross court kick to Jacobson who slotted it home to give Man Chest Hair United a 4-2 advantage.
Buckman, keen to get back into the thick of play, kept edging closer to the action in front of the goal and when the ball came his way, he slotted it home for point number five for his side.
Trailing by three points and with time running out on the clock, Peakaroos changed tactics and brought Karageorgos up into their attack which left substitute goalie, Hai Bul, the tough job of defending their goal.
Bul was kept busy as Man Chest Hair United continuously launched attacking raids hoping to put the game out of reach of a Peakaroos comeback.
Man Chest Hair United also defended fiercely with Sutton working overtime to ensure their goal was impenetrable for the entire second half and they finished with a very well deserved and hard fought 5-2 win.
Egan was named the Player of the Grand Final with the season awards going to: Shannon Purton (Ladies Most Goals with 19); Jade Buckman and Ben Turton (tie for Men’s Most Goals with 10 each); Kathleen Hardie and Jye Stevenson (Best and Fairest players).