LNJSA Juniors - Knock Out Cup Final
LNJSA's Knock Out Cup is played over 2 or 3 rounds each season, with the finals shared around between the clubs. This year saw Dunsborough as the host, with 4 games to be played - 13's, 14's, 15's and Youth League Boys.
Busselton City had reason to be optimistic, with two teams in their respective finals, both having just won their league title. At 9am on the main pitch, we saw the MacKillop 15's take the honours over Capel in a 3-nil win. On the second pitch, a very tight game was taking place between the MacKillop 13's and Margaret River. At 1 all a piece at full time, the game went into extra time and with the score still dead locked at 2 all when extra time was done, the game was decided by penalties. And for the second time, MacKillop came out on top.
At 10:30, it was the Busselton team's turn to join the action. The 14's played on pitch 2 with the Youth League Boys taking center stage on the main pitch. The following match reports are from the team coaches, Brett Moon with the 14's and Gary Norden with the YLB.
14’s LNJSA Cup Final 2019 - by Brett Moon
The sun came out to greet the teams on the Cup day final at Dunsborough Fields, bringing with it heartfelt optimism and a small amount of nervousness as is the custom when involved in such big events. Glory awaited the victors and the lingering sense of what might have been for the runners up. The final was locked and loaded - GMAS Firecrackers verses Busselton Raptors.
The Firecrackers had swung a few magnets around the board and decided to go into the game with a more defensive mindset against their opponents. Their diligent marking and run with style of play paying off. Giving them a number of early chances on goal. The Raptors on the other hand took a little longer to settle, however, as they eventually won their fair share of possession momentum eventually swung back their way.
Raptors control of the midfield verses the Firecrackers’ determination to hold the opposition out of their 18-yard box was what dominated the story line for the rest of the first half. The Firecracker’s early plans had paid off and they went into the half time huddle having put themselves in a really strong position to win.
In the second half, the game opened up a little when the ball was being kicked quickly from end to end resulting in numerous chances to attack for both sides. Every individual contest and bump were being felt by all in sundry with both sides not giving an inch as the tension mounted. In an attempt to break the grid lock, the Raptors captain was sent forward halfway through the second half as they looked for a solution to getting through the Firecrackers defence. It had the desired effect with a neat shot from outside the box getting the better of the goalkeeper, putting the Raptors one up.
The Firecrackers fought out the game to the very end showing great sportsmanship and were graceful in defeat. The Raptors showed their humility and respect for the opposition knowing that they had to fight the entire 60 minutes to bring home the Cup. Many thanks to all of supporters involved on the day and to the Dunsborough Football Club for hosting the event.
Youth League Boys LNJSA Cup Final 2019 - by Gary Norden
Busselton City and Vasse Hawks squared off in the Youth League Cup Final which was only fitting as the teams had finished first and second on the League ladder. City had beaten Vasse comfortably in both League encounters but Cup Finals are one off games and with both centre backs injured, it was a depleted City team that took the field in the final.
However, from the first whistle, City went on the attack, playing a fast paced game and using the full width of the pitch. Vasse defended resolutely in the face of wave after wave of City attacks. John Nguyen was having an outstanding day on the City left wing, constantly providing an option out wide and driving at the Vasse defence. Meanwhile, the League's Golden Boot winner Patrick Sheehan led the front line superbly with his pace and tenacity. After many attempts and some great saves from the Vasse keeper, City finally scored from close range through Nguyen.
City continued to push however they couldn't find the second goal. Chance after chance was squandered with the Vasse posts taking a pounding and their keeper having an outstanding game. When Vasse did try to attack the City defensive midfield of Jaidyn Chromow and Toby Northam acted as a wall in front of the impressive makeshift centre defence of Matt James and captain Joel Anderson. At half time though the score was still only 1-0 and Vasse were still in the game.
City had a great chance to score again within seconds of the restart but somehow missed again from close range. They were nearly left to rue their misses when a few minutes later Vasse missed a great chance of their own following a long ball. After this scare, City then regained control of the game and finally scored a second when Sheehan headed in from a corner. With Sheehan and Nguyen dominant supported well by Liam Hughes and Evan Bosveld on the flanks, City continued to push forward. A wonderful through ball from Nguyen sent Sheehan through on goal and the striker made no mistake. 3-0 to City and that's how the game finished with Sheehan picking up the Player of the Game Award.
The Cup Final win means that Busselton City have won The League and Cup double this season, as in fact that they did last season. Many City players were playing their last game of junior football but they are well placed to make the transition to senior football for Busselton City FC.
Congratulations to every LNJSA player from all the wonderful clubs throughout our region. We hope you all had a wonderful season and a whole lot of fun playing the world's greatest game. Season 2019 may be over, but don't worry, it's only 6 months till season 2020 starts!
Next week is Country Week 2019. Good luck to all 10 of our LNJSA teams. Play hard, play fair, and above all, have a great time. Enjoy!
Although there were a few photographers whose photos have been used in these match reports over the season, Busselton City would like to make a special mention and huge thank you to Sharon Cowley for the thousands of photos she took during the season. Sharon was down at the grounds most Saturdays and Sundays, taking junior and senior photos. Thanks Shaz, these match reports would not be nearly as interesting without your photos!
Wouter Van Der Lugt - 14's Knock Out Cup Final Fairest & Best
Patrick Sheehan - Youth League Boys Knock Out Cup Final Fairest & Best