Easts v Peninsula Power

Eastern Suburbs FC Women extended their unbeaten start to the season to five games with a 4-1 win over Peninsula Power Women at Heath Park on Saturday night.

Harkana Dixon, Natalie Mueller, Chantelle Ryder and Tegan Riding shared the goals for hosts, while Brittany Whitfield chimed in for Power in the first half.

The match started frenetically as both teams saw plenty of chances in the opening half.

The hosts took the lead only three minutes into the contest when Dixon slotted home following a clever overlapping run and low-cross from Chantelle Ryder.

Minutes later Tegan Riding saw her shot chance saved by Power goalkeeper Ally Davis on debut.

Riding spurned another chance on the quarter hour beforePower capitalised minutes later as Whitfield skilfully lobbed a shot past oncoming Easts goalkeeper Abigayle Gabriel-Metta to level terms.

A handful of chances fell to Easts approaching the half-hour but Davis was proving defiant in the Power goal, while Power also had trouble adding to their tally as Chelsea Martin and Whitfield both missed the target.

Dixon delivered a stunning mazy run prior to the break only to send a shot into the side-netting as the teams went into half-time with the scores level.

Power nearly snatched the lead just after the restart when Melissa Limov saw her shot deflect wide following a well-constructed build-up.

Easts proved more opportunistic as Riding saw yet another shot saved before substitute Mueller pounced on the rebound to convert into an open net.

The momentum remained with the hosts when defender Ryder surged into the Power half and delivered a solid low shot to double the advantage just after the hour.

Both sides continued to exchange shots until the final minutes before Hayley Riccardi fouled Tiffany Roberts, allowing Riding to finally breakthrough for her first goal of the match from the penalty spot.

The match ended on a sour note as a serious 85th minute injury to Power’s Kayleigh Smith resulted in an early halt to the match with the agreement of the coaches and match officials.

Speaking post-match Power coach Alan Waller said while his team were competitive they must find another level against the competition’s top teams.

“My job is to make them understand that as long as the effort you put in is 100 per cent and that’s the best effort you can do, which I thought it was tonight, then you have to wear that the opposition was better than you,” he said.

Easts coach Garreth McPherson was glowing of the quality of football on display from both teams, but conceded he was pleased to come away with the three points.

“Our girls came out with intent to play and it was probably the quickest first half of football I have seen. I was impressed with their transition and the intensity for the duration of time they did,” McPherson said.

Eastern Suburbs FC Women  4 (Harkana DIXON 3’, Natalie MUELLER 55’, Chantelle RYDER 64’, Tegan RIDING 84’)
Peninsula Power FC Women  1 (Brittanny WHITFIELD 17’)

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