Story and pics by dogwhistle
The Northern Hotel Rams capped an outstanding season with two solid wins over Alstonville in Saturday’s final round of the Football Far North Coast Pointscore competition.
Despite and awkward start and an early own goal, the Reserve Grade boys were once again the dominant force. A hat-trick to Sam Tomlinson and a goal to Golden Boot Will Ennis saw the Ressies hit an incredible 100 goals from 17 games this season and secure the Pointscore Championship for 2017.
A back pass from Alstonville handed an indirect free kick and first goal to Joel Wood in the opening minutes of the Premier Division match. Thirty minutes into the first half a cross from Sam Shepherd and a superb strike from Gianluca Bongiovanni gave Byron its second goal of the match. A defensive error just before half time left the Byron goal open and Alstonville pounced and were back in the game. Villa came out firing in the second half and a swift counter attack saw the underdogs equalise. Fifteen minutes later, Sam Shepherd was brought down in the box and left no doubt about his penalty strike, putting the Rams back into the lead. Another two minutes on and Joel Walker broke through the Alstonville back line to drive home his second. A red card for retaliation sent Emanuele Atarui to an early shower and the Rams pressed on with 10 men. Midway through the half, Aaron Walker’s through ball put Sam Shepherd on point for his second goal, taking the final score to 5-2. The Rams attacking team of Joel Wood and Sam Shepherd’s two goals apiece gave them each a 17 goal total for the season and a shared Golden Boot.
The Premier Division Rams also took out the Pointscore Championship for 2017 with an equally impressive 93 goals from 17 games, completing the Club record double.
Both teams now enjoy a week off before their first match of the 2017 finals series.