Waikato Stud Matamata Swifts failed to recover from a horror opening fifteen minutes, falling to a 3-2 defeat at traditional bogey team Old Blues in Tauranga.
The Swifts failed to deal with the blustery conditions and some impressive early direct football from the opponents. Their improving defensive unit uncharacteristically leaked three goals inside the first quarter hour in what was a far from ideal start.
But Matamata improved as the game went on, and when Chris Walker scored his third goal in four games just after the half hour his team had a foothold in the match. The Swifts continued to mount the pressure and carved out openings they failed to take.
It was the same story after the break, but Matamata left it too late to score their second. Walker popped up again with four minutes left in what was the only further scoring of the match. Although Matamata left themselves in a huge hole after the opening period, they responded well and would have been disappointed not to have at least grabbed a point.
Leaders Ngongotaha won again, meaning Matamata is now six points off top spot in the Loaded WaiBOP Premiership but still sit in second.
Richardson Racing Stables Swifts Reserves’ match was postponed but the improving Swifts A team grabbed an impressive point at home. They were two goals down at one point before clawing themselves back to a final score of 2-2 against Cambridge in Waikato Division A thanks to goals from Radge Avergonzado and captain, Jamie Cox. While the comeback was impressive enough, the A team will be wondering what could have been after hitting the woodwork three times.
On Sunday the Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies lost 2-1 at home to Huntly Thistle while the Swifts Under-13s beat Claudelands Rovers 1-0 in Hamilton.
All the scoring at the Domain was completed in the first half with captain Kerrie Cox netting for Matamata Ladies, while Huntly scored twice. Despite having the better of the second half the ladies couldn’t manage to find at least an equaliser.
The Swifts U-13s were lucky not to be behind at half time at Claudelands, but offered a better second half performance that was capped off by a well taken goal from Harry Conner.
Open Grade: Matamata Jets 10-0 Northern United (Goals: Sam Hills 5, Adam Harris, Jayden Hunter-Martin, Anton Ganas, Will Benefield, own goal. Player of the day: Sam Hills & Adam Harris). Cambridge 6-1 Matamata Falcons (Goal: Rhys Campbell. POD: Nikhil Haumu).
11th Grade: Hamilton West 1-9 Matamata Dragons (Goals: Dylan Brown 3, Reilly Benefield 3, Oscar Donderwinkel, own goals 2. POD: Mason Hornsey). Morrinsville 0-12 Matamata Tigers (Goals: Logan Cox-Milne 8, Michael Griffits 3, Ashlyn Good. POD: Ashlyn Good).
10th Grade: Matamata Rebels 2-1 Raglan.
9th Grade: Southwell 5-2 Matamata Eagles (Goals: Jason Li, own goal. POD: Nathan Quinn). Matamata Strikers – BYE.