Dragons fire up at home

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - SPORT -

THE Dou­glas United Dragons have recorded their first vic­tory of the Pre­mier­ship sea­son af­ter an epic come from be­hind vic­tory over Ma­reeba at Cas­sowary Park on Satur­day night.

It was the first time in sev­eral years the Dragons have man­aged to se­cure a win over Ma­reeba, with goals from Nick Tither and Ian Marsh enough to se­cure an ex­cel­lent 2-1 vic­tory.

The Verri In­dus­tries Dragons started the match brightly and won a cou­ple of early cor­ners but were un­able to take ad­van­tage of these op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Ma­reeba then be­gan to im­pose them­selves on the game and took the lead about 20 min­utes into the match af­ter a shot from the edge of the penalty area.

It could have been worse for the Dragons as Ma­reeba con­tin­ued to push for­ward while the Dragons them­selves strug­gled to get into any sort of rhythm.

The one bright point for the Dragons was the per­for­mance of lone striker Si­mone Gen­tile who worked tire­lessly up front and put the Ma­reeba de­fence un­der plenty of pres­sure.

The sec­ond half saw a more com­pet­i­tive dis­play from the Dragons, while Ma­reeba were still caus­ing prob­lems of their own.

Keeper Gary Fitzger­ald con­tin­ued his good early sea­son form, mak­ing a num­ber of good saves to keep the score at 1-0.

Again the Dragons forced a num­ber of cor­ners as they grew into the game and when one corner was par­tially clear Ben Syrett smashed a shot from the edge of the area which the keeper could only parry into the path of skip­per Nick Tither who made no mis­take from five yards out.

It was now game on, and, while there were still a few anx­ious mo­ments, the Dragons con­tin­ued to push for­ward with in­tent.

With just over 10 min­utes re­main­ing on the clock Matty Smith crossed from the right and the ball made its way through to Ian Marsh who coolly tucked the ball away to make it 2-1 to the Dragons.

It was now the Dragons’ game to lose and Ma­reeba threw men for­ward look­ing for an equaliser of their own but the home sides de­fence stood res­o­lute.

With time wind­ing down, Gen­tile was shield­ing the ball out of play when he was wres­tled to the ground by a Ma­reeba de­fender who re­ceived a straight red card.

Photo by AN­THONY CAPOGRECO

Head­ing in the right di­rec­tion: Dragons player John Raf­faele

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