Re­silient By­ron Bay downs Ban­ga­low in ex­tra time

The Northern Star - - SPORT - Thibault Berthier sport@north­ern­star.com.au See The North­ern Star to­mor­row for re­port on women’s pre­mier league grand fi­nal.

I thought out­played them, even with 10 men we dom­i­nated — Da­mon Bell

TEN-man By­ron Bay won the Far North Coast pre­mier league soccer grand fi­nal in a 2-1 ex­tra time win over Ban­ga­low at Richards Oval, Lis­more on Satur­day night.

A dou­ble from player-ofthe-match Joel Wood se­cured the win and a his­toric tre­ble for the Rams, who also won the point score and An­zac Cup tro­phies this sea­son.

By­ron started strongly and was re­warded early when Thi­ago Pri­oris’s long pass found Wood, who rounded Ban­ga­low goal­keeper Jefte Juarez- Leiva and fin­ished from a tight an­gle to give the Rams the lead.

By­ron’s joy was short lived as mid­fielder Ben Ahearn was sent off in the 16th minute for a lung­ing tackle on Ban­ga­low mid­fielder Joel Rud­g­ley.

Ban­ga­low clawed its way back into the match and cap­i­talised mid­way through the sec­ond half when Sam Ireland pounced a loose ball to level the scores at 1-all.

Nei­ther side was able to fur­ther im­pact the scor­ing de­spite sev­eral chances at both ends, forc­ing the game into ex­tra time.

By­ron found the break­through when Gian­luca Bon­gio­vanni broke free on the right flank and squared to Wood, who made no mis­take with his fin­ish to se­cure a win for the Rams.

By­ron Bay coach Da­mon Bell praised his side for its re­silience.

“It was a hard game. We lost a player in the first 15 min­utes, we played 75 min­utes of nor­mal time with 10 men who car­ried on into ex­tra time and got the re­sult, which was fan­tas­tic,” Bell said.

“I thought we out­played them, even with 10 men we dom­i­nated, it’s a great win to win the tre­ble for the first time.

“It’s the best sea­son in By­ron Bay’s his­tory, the strength all around the park, the depth of the squad, it was easy to coach, they’re all qual­ity play­ers.”

Ban­ga­low coach Neil Fuller felt it was an op­por­tu­nity missed for his side.

“With them get­ting a guy sent off so early on, we should’ve cap­i­talised,” Fuller said.

“De­fen­sively we weren’t as good as we could be tonight. Our fin­ish­ing let us down a bit too.”


TI­TLE COL­LECTED: By­ron Bay cel­e­brates after win­ning the Far North Coast soccer pre­mier league grand fi­nal on Satur­day night.

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