Tauranga City United 2 ECB 2 played 08/05/2016 at Links Ave, Mt Maunganui

A game that swung from end to end with both teams dominating for significant times finally ended in a draw as Bays and Tauranga met for the first time in several years.


Links Ave was in good condition and Tauranga were first to strike in the opening moments while Bays replied immediately when Judd Baker’s header from a Jason McKeown free kick was well saved by keeper Thomas Pamment.


A Tauranga break in the 14th minute was well blocked by Alex Carr and the Bays keeper was to have a busy afternoon.


Dylan Stansfield shot wide and Andrew Mobberley had his strike deflected before Bays took the lead in the twentieth minute.    Baker was put through, beating the defensive cover, and as the keeper advanced he placed a delightful lob over his head into the net.


Tauranga immediately hit back and it took a great save from  Carr to deny Colm Kenny.


Bays won a corner in the 26th minute. Pamment came for Jason McKeown’s cross, missed it, allowing an unmarked Baker to head home his second.


Bays now took charge and camped in the Tauranga half. Stansfield saw two chances go wide and Tauranga scrambled the ball off their line twice in quick succession with desperate defending.


A rare Tauranga break just before half time saw Kenny miss a sitter with his header and Michael Kolston stop and follow up.


Tauranga came out firing after the break and Carr was forced into two fine save from Kenny within minutes. A great break by Bays was wasted with a poor finish and Kenny missed another chance.


Just short of the hour, Jerahl Hughes who had been giving John White a hard time down the left flank, finally got a telling cross in and and Kenny scored with a close range shot that gave Carr no chance. This goal lifted Tauranga and Carr pulled off yet another good save to deny Nathan Monne.


Play moved back and forth until the 68th minute when Kenny outmuscled Kolston and slotted home to level the score.


Time ran down into the last fifteen minutes with both sides going for the win.

White got forward only to shoot wide, Carr saved from Hughes, Tauranga muffed a good opportunity, McKeown had a strike blocked, Pamment saved from Stansfield as both teams gave all.


The final whistle came with both teams deadlocked.


Team:  Carr, White, Kolston, Robinson, Archer, Bresnahan, McKeown, McMinn (Hitchin 60), Mobberley (Peat 77), Baker (Carter 68), Stansfield


Goals:  Baker 20,26


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