Waikato Stud Matamata Swifts 2-3 Melville United
Waikato Stud Matamata Swifts ended their season as they have often ended games this season, with a narrow defeat that, with a bit more incisiveness and concentration, should have been a victory.
The Swifts didn’t help themselves early on, putting through their own net twice inside the first quarter hour to give the visitors, who were superbly attired in Matamata’s away kit, a two goal cushion that could easily have been avoided. But Matamata improved as the half wore on and were rewarded for their industry just before the break when Michael Dawson headed home his second goal of the season to halve the deficit.
The second half was a brighter affair for Matamata as they looked to square things up. The equaliser came twenty minutes in and it was another Sam Masterson special. The young Swifts midfielder spotted his opportunity and floated the ball home from all of 45 yards to restore parity and set the game up for a bright finish.
While Matamata looked the more likely to grab a winner, the sucker punch came inside the final ten minutes when they failed to deal with a routine corner and Melville headed home. Brad West had an excellent late opportunity to level things up again, but his close range shot was superbly saved and Melville escaped with all three points.
The result left the Swifts eighth in the twelve team WaiBOP Premiership. While this was an improvement on 2014, the club will be looking for more next year as the large amount of young players, who were given an extended taste of senior football, will be expected to turn this experience into results.
Richardson Racing Stables Swifts Reserves 8-0 Whakatane Town
Richardson Racing Stables Swifts Reserves moved into the Waikato Championship’s top six in the most emphatic style imaginable, dispatching visiting Whakatane Town thanks to four goals in each half.
The result was the culmination of a good season’s work from the young side and a measure of how much they’ve improved over the course of 2015. From the moment Josh Oed flicked home the opener, this result was never in doubt. Goals from Gary Dobson, twice, and Logan Allen pretty much ended the match as a contest by half time, but the carnage continued after the break.
Shaun Richardson, Luis John and Lawrence Clothier all helped themselves to goals, before keeper, Matt Aberhart was presented with a great opportunity to score a rare goal. John already had the ball in the net, but the ref stuck with his late decision to award a penalty, and Aberhart slid the ball home to round out the scoring, much to the delight of the home fans.
The reserves could well have had double figures against their demoralised opponents, but missed several great chances. Still, not a bad way to end the season.
Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies 0-2 Cambridge
Waikato Division B Top 6
The Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies let in a goal in each half to fall to a frustrating defeat in the final match of an encouraging season. Matamata began brightly, creating several openings before letting in a soft goal not long before half time.
The Ladies continued to attack after the break, but Cambridge held firm and snatched a second goal that effectively sealed the match.
It was a harsh result for Matamata but one that doesn’t detract from what has been an encouraging season for the team, which culminated in them winning the Waikato Plate a couple of weeks ago.