The Oceania cup was held in Astonville over last weekend.
The Brunswick Bees, formerly known as Bruns Babes Girls 13s, entered. We could only gather 10 players because of school holidays. This was a round robin in groups.
On Saturday, the girls’ first game, we lost 2–0; they were very rusty but improved as the game progressed. The second game they tried their best but played a very good Alstonville side which had three subs on high rotation, which finally took its toll on the Bruns team.
Sunday, another game. The girls were sore and muscles tight and bruised. They fought out a tough 0–0 draw. But they had made it to the 3–4 play-off game.
The girls had a two-hour break, which was great for their tired bodies.
For the play-off game the coach made a tactical change – goalkeeper Zoė as striker and midfielder Lily in goals. Coach explained to the team to give all they had for first 15 minutes and attack the opposition as Zoė is unwell.
The girls followed the instructions perfectly. The goalkeeper-turned-striker found the net 1–0. Within the next few minutes she had hit the crossbar and saved a shot on the line. The team were playing their best game, short one player and dominating.
The Bruns forward line was playing in perfect harmony, then another attacking move found Tiare in front of goals, she coolly slotted the ball home 2–0.
This was the half-time score. The girls were looking very tired and hot; the game was played in 31 degrees heat.
Lily back on the field, who had a great first half in goals, made a few fine saves. The coach spoke to the girls: it will be tough in the second half, absorb their pressure and play counter-attack.
Alstonville attacked from the restart. The Bruns girls were struggling but they survived the first 10 minutes of the second half.
The girls needed something to happen – and it did. Bracie found herself with the ball at the halfway line. Coach called out ‘go for a run’ and she did – dribbling past defenders into the penalty area, she steadied herself and blasted the ball into the back of the net 3–0 her first goal of the season and an important one.
Coach had never seen the team so exhausted but they never gave in. Another counter-attack found Tiare in open space in the penalty area and who squeezed a shot past the goalkeeper 4–0.
The final whistle sounded – the girls claimed third place. Well done!
Coach and parents were so proud. Bruns Bees team: Capt Julia, Zoe, Xyanna, Tess, Romany, Bracie, Lily, Tiare, Mirrabel, Kara.