Rafe Griffin (@rafegriffin)
Peninsula Power and Moreton Bay have played out an ebb-and-flow high scoring 4-4 thriller with Jordan Farina scoring a late equaliser to send the match into penalties that ended up in a penalties win to Moreton Bay
The match began at a very high tempo with end-to-end action.
Jani Puet and Mitch Buhmann were both presented with opportunities in the first two minutes to open the scoring for Peninsula.
It was then the Jets turn to chance their arm with Jordan Farina delivering a low cross that Joley Masudsa was unable to put away.
Farina seized the opportunity and put away a free kick from just outside the box that was reminiscent of the winner he scored in last year’s NPL Grand Final. Curled around the wall to beat Power keeper Antony Hall who seemed a little flat-footed in attempting to block the shot.
Jets doubled their advantage five minutes later as Jackson Hall made his way into the box and poked the ball past Hall.
Enter Charles Mendy, up against the club he assisted to last year’s NPL Premiership. With Moreton Bay shaping up to score again, Peninsula won the ball inside their own area with Mendy then launched on a length of the field run. He blitzed at least five Jets and the only way he could be stopped was to be brought down in the box by Reyze Kelly.
Mendy took the resulting penalty but seemed to be too casual with his attempt sending it straight to Matt Stein.
A goal would come for the tournament hosts though shorty after the half hour mark. A run down the right with a cross cut across a number of Power players before landing for Chris Swain to put away.
The attack continued to ebb and flow. Tiaga Ishikura on the end of a Farina cross that the Japanese could only send a tame effort straight to Hall.
Peninsula would get back on level terms with Scott McNeill delivering a wonderful long cross that was brilliantly controlled on the chest by Swain for Matt Sanchez to drill into the back of the net.
Again Swain was involved with a pinpoint cross as Mendy was rewarded for his efforts on the evening and duly saluted the crowd.
Hall had one final chance for the Jets on halftime but it would be Power with the halftime advantage.
It was more of the same attacking attitude from both sides in the opening five minutes of the second half, both having opportunities to add to their tally with the Jets clattering one effort onto the woodwork.
Both sides traded goals in a four-minute period when firstly Taiga Ishikura scored for the Jets to level the match once more.
Kado Aoci provided Peninsula’s fourth with the assistance of the underside of the crossbar.
Scott Stewart headed sharply from a corner with quarter of an hour to play but Hall was equal to the task with his save.
The task would be made harder for Moreton Bay to claim points out of the match when Liam Fairgrieves was delivered a red card for a crude challenge on McNeill.
Deep in stoppage time, Farina went on a tear into the box and calmly slipped the ball past Hall to send the match into penalties.
Mitch Buhmann had his penalty saved in the shoot-out by Stein, the Jets collecting the bonus points for the penalties win.
Peninsula Power 4 (Chris Swain 31’, Matt Sanchez 41’, Charles Mendy 45’, Kado Aoci 60’) v Moreton Bay 4 (Jordan Farina 11’, 90+3’, Jackson Hall 16’, Taiga Ishikura 56’). Moreton Bay won 4-3 on penalties.
Peninsula: Antony Hall (GK), Kado Aoci, Jared Austin, Mitch Buhmann, Myles Carseldine, Trent McEvoy, Charles Mendy, Jani Puet, Jack Porter, Matt Sauer, Chris Swain, Brad Burrows (GK), Scott Mitchell, Luke Plummer, Matt Sanchez, Chom Arop.
Moreton Bay: Matt Stein, Reyze Kelly, Scott Stewart, Matt Byrne, James Honey, Alex Janovsky, Joley Masuda, Tiaga Ishikura, Jonathan Marraiya, Jordan Farina, Jackson Hall, Royce Brownlie, Jacob Fulluck, Jacob Mitchell, Liam Fairgrieves, Finn Beakhurst.