Cup final in Raiders’ reach

Lincoln Knights 7 def Sekol Masters 3 

Goal scorers for Sekol Masters were Jackson Jamieson with two and Dylan Broome with one.

Pizzeria Trieste man of the match, Pete Taylor, scored five with Adam Brown netting two for the Knights. This win for Knights sets up a show down with South Coast  to decide who will play off in the cup final against Raiders. 

Lincoln City Raiders 3 def South Coast FC 0

Kirton Oval roared into action for the local derby. Both teams formed up with talented players, South Coast with their line-up dominated by veteran players at and the Lincoln City Raiders filled with ravenous youth.

The opening minutes were cagey with Raiders playing with tremendous pace and pressing South Coast back to defend and remain structured in their own half.

The Blues played exciting football and toiled much of the first half without breaching Coast’s net, goalkeeper Marco Radovini made a couple of saves, but with no clear cut chances, was settled. 

South Coast was busy in defence, proving how important centre back Pascal Hess is to the team.

Raiders’ midfield was true to form and spread passes through Simon Gale, Dannen Blacker and Travis Wells.

South Coast found the first half difficult with little time on the ball as they were closed down by rabid Raiders keen to get the ball back. 

I. Betsias was an asset to City with exceptional work down the right wing keeping Naish Parthenis occupied.

The most dangerous of attacks was occurring at the feet of Lane Pennington with his trickery and pace proving to be a nightmare for the South Coast.

City moved the ball often to exploit the weakness in South Coast’s armour with Wells and Pennington crafting a great partnership on the left side of the final third. 

South Coast tackles grew heavier at right back as they were under consistent pressure from Wells and Pennington which yielded results with a free kick awarded to the boys in blue.

I. Betsias stepped up around the Reds’ wall as a shudder of inevitability went through defending players. With a flick of his right foot the ball shot over the wall onto goal only to be saved by Radovini, but Brodie Arthur bundled the goal home from point blank range. 

In a final flashpoint, L. Pennington broke and looked to pull the trigger on another dangerous cross which left him unable to walk at the end of the first half. 

The second half kicked off with a blunted attack for Raiders with L. Pennington ruled out for the game.

It was a physical battle personified by the battle between Coast’s centre back Ryan Black and centre forward Nathan Spinks.

Throw-ins from Raiders at times went through the physical prowess of Spinks who provided Blacker with perfect flick-ons to fire shots on Coast’s goal with Radovini making plenty of saves.

South Coast’s Anthony Duns tried to hold possession but was under constant pressure from two or three Raiders players.

With a change of formation South Coast found opportunities to get forward, winning several corners. 

As the Reds pressed, Raiders were solid in defence, Seth Betsias, Mark Joosten and Cale Pennington dispossessing South Coast attackers and getting the ball back into City’s possession.

Dane Whitburn found rotation for Raiders.

Coast won several corners through Luke Wilkins but were unable to pierce Raiders’ goal and suffered a setback with Ryan Sarunic tucking away a goal.

On display was an intriguing set up by Raiders from corner kicks, without a player starting inside the attacking 18-yard box.

The set play was the final goal to put an end to the tie with Gale gliding through South Coast’s zonal marking to nod the ball home at the front post. A big double save from Nick Sevelj ensured Coast went home with a clean sheet. 

The game was a great example of the growth of quality soccer in the local community. 

Lincoln City Raiders’ Ryan Sarunic was the Pizzeria Trieste man of the match.