Toko­roa ends sea­son with win

South Waikato News - - SPORT/NEWS - By DAVID WRIGHT

Toko­roa did all that was asked of them when they com­pre­hen­sively de­stroyed a Te Awa­mutu side here at Strath­more Park on Satur­day played in fan­tas­tic sunny con­di­tions in front of a large crowd.

Un­for­tu­nately Melville from Hamil­ton also won when they dis­patched Foss from Hamil­ton 5-1 and with that win wrapped up the Waikato B cham­pi­onship with Toko­roa a close sec­ond.

Toko­roa played some early pos­ses­sion foot­ball and hav­ing in­flu­en­tial skip­per Gareth Wil­liams back in cen­tral de­fence looked in to­tal con­trol against a side who in their last three games had caused the op­po­si­tion lots of trou­ble, namely Melville who they had only just lost to.

Te Awa­mutu were chas­ing shad­ows for the first 15 min­utes and it was no sur­prise when Toko­roa took the lead when their top striker Michael Fitzpatrick scored af­ter neat buildup play. In the 27th minute Toko­roa went fur­ther ahead when Fizt­patrick blasted home from 35 yards a stun­ning strike which to­tally de­ceived the Te Awa­mutu keeper when the ball swerved in mid air. The Fitzpatrick hat­trick was com­plete when he scored again from an an­gled shot that again was too pow­er­ful bring­ing the score to 3-0.

With Toko­roa dom­i­nat­ing in mid­field and all over the park the home crowd were in a con­fi­dent mood come the in­ter­val and in the sec­ond half Toko­roa again took con­trol but un­like the first half some of Toko­roa’s fin­ish­ing was not as sharp and it re­mained 3-0 un­til in the 70th minute when the crowd wit­nessed the best goal of the sea­son. From a clear­ance the ball fell to Toko­roa mid­fielder Joe Con­roy whose in­stinc­tive vol­ley was smashed high into the net from 25 yards for a su­perb goal to fin­ish the sea­son with. Coach David Wright was de­lighted with the per­for­mance and con­grat­u­lated all of his play­ers per­son­ally for their con­tri­bu­tion.

Ob­vi­ously we have grown as a unit and have played some great foot­ball. Yes we would have loved to win the league but when you find out that the team you are in a cham­pi­onship race with have two Premier league de­fen­sive play­ers join their ranks af­ter round 10 then I think we can be re­ally happy with where we have fin­ished, we had the best de­fence in all of the di­vi­sions by only con­ced­ing 9 goals all year but we were hurt with a cou­ple of draws but over­all a fan­tas­tic ef­fort.

Wright praised the cap­tain Gareth Wil­liams and cen­tre­back part­ner Thomas Dun­can for a su­perb sea­son and thought Chris Teague had be­come in­flu­en­tial in mid­field and strik­ers Des Philipps and Michael Fitzpatrick had grown as a part­ner­ship to­gether, with all play­ers be­com­ing stronger as a group for next year.

Toko­roa Soc­cer club closes for the year with a North ver­sus South game to be played at Strath­more Park on Satur­day 1st Oc­to­ber at 2.45pm fol­lowed by prize-giv­ing in the evening.

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