A full-strength Francis Douglas Memorial College team overcame an early setback and proved too strong for Eltham in a high-scoring Taranaki premier grade football match in New Plymouth last Saturday.
FDMC fielded all three of the Team Taranaki players for the first time this season and scored a 6-4 win over their South Taranaki opposition.
Eltham rocked the college side early when a through ball caught the defence flat-footed. Attacking midfielder Tom Brett raced through to chip the stranded keeper.
This spurred FDMC into action and they dominated the rest of the half playing, at times, some sublime football in the slippery conditions.
After 20 minutes, the school side equalised and scored a further three times before the halftime break, with striker Connor Hay scoring and Ryan Hawken beating four Eltham players including the goal-keeper. Team Taranaki regular Ash Reader Nokes scored his first goal for the school side hitting a 25-metre rocket into the top corner of the net to put FDMC 4-1 up at halftime.
In the second half, Eltham closed the gap to 4-2 before FDMC striker Patrick Hay scored to make it 5-2.
Eltham hit back with goals to Ferguson and Brett, who scored a cracking goal to give him a double for the game. FDMC sealed the game with a tap in from Thomas Wright.
Meanwhile, FDMC has pulled out of the Duff Rosebowl knockout competition to concentrate on inter-college matches. As a result of their decision, Eltham were awarded a 3-0 win in the latest round and remain alive in the trophy competition.
In Duff Rosebowl games played last Saturday, top-of-the-table premier side New Plymouth Rangers played division one team Woodleigh at Merrilands Domain.
Predictably Rangers came away comfortable 5-0 winners, including a hat-trick by sharpshooter Hayden Laird.
Nathan Hill kicked off the scoring in what is possibly the fastest goal in trophy history with a well-taken chip that left the Woodleigh keeper stranded off his line only seconds after kick-off.
Rangers settled quickly and created many enterprising attacks which were foiled by solid defensive work from a gutsy Woodleigh lineup.
In the 22nd minute, Laird scored the first of his three goals with a well-taken drive followed three minutes later by a good finish at the post by Ciaran Forsythe.
Laird scored his second after 59 minutes with a classy header and a third with a volley in the 63rd minute.
Woodleigh never gave up and the New Plymouth side's top team showed they would be competitive in the premier league next season should they make the step up.
The Hawera premier side won their Rosebowl game against division one Black Hart Rangers 3-0, while Peringa United beat Inglewood 2-1 in a tight game between two premier sides.
- Taranaki Daily News
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