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Semi Finals - Under 12s Report - 7 Sept 2015

Posted: 07-Sep-2015 by Hakoah Sydney City East Football Club

It was a real test of character for the U12's on Saturday in their Elimination semi-final against Northern Tigers at Valentine Park.

After being soundly beaten the previous week, it was 'do or die' against opponents that Hakoah had beaten previously in the regular season....but as the boys are finding out - finals football is a whole new ball game. The pre-match preparation was calm and the boys came out very focused. It was however the Tigers that started stronger and Hakoah had to withstand an early onslaught from fired up opponents. The Hakoah defence looked up for the battle from the start, with central defenders James Sloman and Jake Ziman looking organised and in control. The first line of defence is always the attackers and Lee Charles and Ethan Corrick kept the pressure on the Tigers defenders allowing no easy outs from the back.

Gradually the pendulum began to swing in the match as the Hakoah midfield began to impose themselves in the midfield. Pressure play forced two corners which Hakoah was unable to capitalise on, but soon after some individual brilliance from Thomas Mumford opened the scoring. After some enterprising play down the right flank, Mumford found himself in space after beating a couple of defenders. Summing up the situation he delivered the perfect cross that turned into a stunning goal as it sailed over the stranded keeper's head into the side netting. The goal sparked a lift in intensity from both sides and there were some big tackles to go with a bit of needle in the game. On the stroke of halftime (is there a better time to score) Josh Fuchs again showed what a great talent he is when he latched onto a ball in the midfield, took on his opponent and then fired in searching shot with his favoured left foot from distance that beat the outstretched hand of the keeper into the back of the net. 2-0 at halftime was a good place to be.

The boys knew that the Tigers would come out strong, as they had won 3-2 the previous week from the same half time score. They started strong and it was only a combination of good defending and some good fortune that kept them out. Some scrambling defence however was the catalyst for the play of the game. Working the ball out from the back through multiple passes, the play eventually found Jared Frack on the right wing who took the ball forward at pace before delivering a high floating cross that was perfectly met by Lee Charles in the right position at the right time. 3-0 was a lead that was never going to be surrendered. It did however require more strong defence, particularly from Joe Merrison to see out the game for Hakoah.

The reward for the win is a rematch against Sydney Uni on Saturday in the Preliminary Final for the right to contest the Grand Final against Spirit a week later. 


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