Pine Rivers progress to FFA Cup Round 6

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BRISBANE – Capital 1’s Pine Rivers advanced to the sixth round of the FFA Cup with two goals in the last fifteen minutes to secure a 2-0 win against Capital 2’s Centenary Stormers.

Pine Rivers: Reed (gk), Jackson, Hooper, James, Cassimatis, Condon, Waddell, Freestone, West, Suggett, Shore. Subs: Russell, Cunneen, Warburton, Roy

Centenary: Rathbone (gk), Birt, Khan, Kilkeary, Kleibo, La Carta, Le, D. Mehinagic, F. Mehinagic, Nystrom, Schofield. Subs: Burstow, Gilbert, Schofield, Shameem, Spence.

Due to Rivers’ home field being closed for council maintenance, the venue was switched to Pine Hills’ James Drysdale Reserve and that initially seemed to agree with.Pine Rivers as they had the better of the opening ten minutes, Nick Waddell providing the best chance for his side early on, finding side netting.

After that initial period, Centenary settled into their work and thirteen minutes in, Centenary’s Clinton La Carta was able to break free down the right, evading the offside trap and with Rivers keeper Troy Reed advancing deep in his area, La Carta sent his resulting shot wide of the upright.

The ‘home’ side’s midfield was giving away cheap ball to their opponents on far too many occasions during the first half and once again Reed was called into action in the 20th minute with an advancing Joe Kleibo creating a one-on-one opportunity, the ‘keeper did enough to deviate the attacker’s run to ensure his shot would go off-target.

In reality, neither keeper was particularly worried in the opening stanza with both sets of defences forcing any shots to be taken from long distance. The half ending with two corners to Rivers, the second of which almost provided them with a chance to take an unlikely half time lead as Sam West blasted a shot straight to Tyrone Rathbone.

In terms of attacking opportunities, the opening to second half continued to be the same refrain but with Pine Rivers nullifying the mistakes and keeping much better control of the ball. That resulted in Rivers placing sustained pressure on Centenary’s defence with the result being that Martyn Freestone miscued from just outside the six yard box midway through tge period and two minutes later, unable to convert a spilt Rathbone attempted save from a similar distance.

Apart from a couple of Centenary counter-attacks, Pine Rivers continued their grip on the match and with thirteen minutes to go, substitute Ross Cunneen teed up Sam West who came up with the opener.

Cunneen was then rewarded six minutes later when he sealed his side’s place in the sixth round with a well taken strike from near the penalty spot.

Centenary had a chance three minutes into stoppage time to make life interesting with a free kick deflecting over the crossbar.

For Pine Rivers, they may pay the price in the next round if they get off to the same slow start as tonight while Centenary did have chances to clinch a win with their first half effort but can once again hold their heads up high after another impressive Cup campaign.

Pine Rivers 2 (Sam West 77’, Ross Cunneen 83’) v Centenary Stormers 0

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