East Coast Bays Summer Sevens
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The Premiers and Development team have finished their season.
A superb Jason Hicks strike 25 seconds into the game and his hat trick in the 90th minute was a fitting start and finish to a magnificent display by East Coast Bays as they demolished Central United 7-0 at Kiwitea St on Sunday.
Bays and Central have met many times over the years with games being decided by the odd goal or two in what are mostly close encounters but never, in my wildest dreams, would I have contemplated a score like this.
The first 45 minutes produced some of the finest football seen this season with both teams turning it on, the second half didn’t quite match up, only because it was dominated by one side.
This was an important game for Bays, a win would put them back in contention for the league, with results the previous day all in their favour. And what a start, they kicked off, the ball was passed to Hicks who let fly a thunderbolt from thirty metres that crashed into the top of the net giving keeper Blaz Bugarin no chance.
Encouraged by this start, Bays applied pressure and Bugarin was again in action saving at the feet of Dillon Barnett and then blocking Luiz Del Monte. Then the combined efforts of Joe Bresnahan and Eric Jones-Seekie set up another chance that was spurned.
Both teams like to play football and the spectators were treated to some great interplay with Jones-Seekie giving Ivan Vicelich a hard time, Jack Beguely allowing Milos Nikolic no freedom whatsoever, Del Monte and Takuya Iwata going head to head and Stephen Carmichael, Paul Urlovic and Daniel Koprivcic getting nothing from Kris Carpenter and Phil Edginton. In midfield, Bresanahan, Jason McKeown and Hicks kept the pressure on the Central defenders.
The last five minutes of the half saw the game swing towards Bays. First Bugarin saved from Del Monte and at the other end Alex Carr denied Emiliano Tade. Then a Jones-Seekie cross found an unmarked Deklan Wynne who headed the ball over a badly positioned Bugarin into the net. Bays then won the ball from the kick off in stoppage time and Barnett was upended by Iwta. After consulting with his AR, referee Mirko Benishcke pointed to the spot. Bresnahan sent Bugarin the wrong way and bays were 3-0 up at the break.
Central had come back from 3-0 down in another game earlier in the season, so there was no sense that the game was over and Koprivcic had two off-target chances early in the half.
Just before the hour, Hicks let fly with a drive that Bugarin could only parry on to the upright and Del Monte was first to the ball to score and make it 4-0.
A bad clearance from Bugarin almost cost another goal but the keeper was quick enough to deny Barnett. Carpenter and Hicks both had further chances before Hicks got his second goal with a drive from the edge of the box after receiving a pass from Jones-Seekie.
It was all Bays at this stage and Nathan Buswell should have scored after receiving a great ball from Wynne but Wynne scored his second a minute later after latching on the a through ball.
With time running out, Buswell was again blocked by Bugarin and Hicks was off-target with the rebound. However Hicks was not to be denied a well-deserved hat trick as he was put through in the last minute and smacked the ball past Bugarin.
The coaching staff could not praise the team enough for such an outstanding display and the Bays supporters were left estatic.
Team: Carr, Beguely (Darkwa 79), Edginton, Carpenter, Wynne, Bresnahan, McKeown, Del Monte (Munday 61), Jones-Seekie, Hicks, Barnett (Buswell 70)
Scorers: Hicks 1, 67, 90; Wynne 45, 78; Brenahan pen 45+, Del Monte 58
The Development Team lost 6-2 to Central on Saturday. Te Rui Carter and Zane Olla both got on the scoresheet. According to reports, the youngsters played well.