Late Heath Header Secures Point For Reds
A late goal from Richard Heath, rising highest from a corner to bury a header earned Clarence a 2-2 draw with Launceston City at Wentworth Park on Saturday evening. City were made to rue a series of misses in a game they should have taken all three points from but Clarence’s fighting spirit was on display as they almost stole all 3 points in a game that came alive in the second half.
City started the brighter of the two sides and should have been ahead on four minutes after being awarded a penalty for a handball in the area. Isaac Degetto stepped up and hit a rather tame effort which Dyson saved with a minimum of fuss.
The next good chance also fell their way when Dom Rossi blasted a ball over the top from the middle of the box after being set up by a storming run from Aaron Campbell who had put it on a platter for him.
They were the only two genuine chances in the first 45, a few hopeful shots from range and some poor passes in key areas letting both sides down but it was a game Launceston City seemed to be in control of and looked the more likely side to score.
They took a deserved lead shortly in the second half when Isaac Degetto scored a sublime individual goal. His pace had caused Clarence issues all games and he tore away, beating multiple defenders, surging into the box and placing his shot perfectly to make it 1-0.
The next 10 minutes following the goal was devoid of action before Clarence were then handed a lifeline when Andrew Robb went down in the box after contact from Leonard and the referee pointed straight to the spot. The decision incensed the City players and there was a scuffle in the box with things threatening to boil over as players squared up to each other in a physical confrontation.
Grant Malcolm then stepped up and blasted an effort that Smith got a piece of, but not enough to prevent it finding the back of the net and leveling things up at 1-1.
City somehow didn’t take the lead 15 minutes from time when Mattarozzi curled a shot from the top of the box that seemed destined for the net only for it to curl significantly late on in its trajectory and crash against the inside of the woodwork to spill just wide.
It didn’t seem it would matter as moments later 16 year old Jarrod Linger again showed he is a real player of the future by stroking home an effort into the corner of the net after pouncing on the ball in the box. It restored his sides lead and seemed like it would be the winner.
Clarence however continued to make the most of their limited opportunities, Randall curled in a sublime curling corner which Heath made tremendous contact with and leveled it again at 2-2. In truth they had been outplayed for a majority of the game and scarcely deserved a point but their best period of the game came in the final 10 minutes as they fought back to try claim something from the game.
There was to be more late drama as in the final minute of play both teams had chances to win it. First Clarence had an effort cleared off the line as Heath came within an inch of a brace with another header from a corner. City then pounced back the other way and seemed certainties to scores with a 5 on 2 situation but it was Mathew Dyson who would be the hero. The keeper made himself big in goal and made a superb clutch save to ensure Clarence kept their point and the game would end 2-2.