Te Awamutu hang on for draw

Helena Gail-Mckenzie of Te Awamutu AFC takes on Cambridge’s Maria Cameron. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Honours were shared in the Battle of Waipā between Cambridge and Te Awamutu in the Waikato division one women’s senior reserve match at John Kerkhof Park in Cambridge on Sunday.

But the joy on the Te Awamutu players face when the whistle blew with the score at 2-2, showed the draw meant more to them than Cambridge.

And that is because Cambridge – down by 0-2 with 24 minutes to go – grabbed two goals and then peppered the Te Awamutu defence with attack after attack.

Holding on was a tribute to the young Te Awamutu team’s character.

Cambridge 2: Tahlia Hansen 66’, Charlotte Watson 79’; Te Awamutu 2: Amanda Carleton 9’, Esha Fellingham 55’

Te Awamutu AFC’s Renee Easton, left, and Cambridge’s Maria Cameron in a goal field melee as Sam Corbett reels away. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Cambridge FC v Te Awamutu AFC

The delight on Te Awamutu players faces is obvious at full time. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Meanwhile Cambridge Reds maintained their unbeaten run in the Northern Region Football League Southern Conference with a thumping 5-1 victory over Taupō at John Kerkohf Park on Saturday.

Reds on the run: Joshua Clarkin, left, and Jack Connor for Cambridge FC burst clear of Taupō defender Sean Barbour during The Reds 5-1 win over the visitors. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

But tardy supporters need to ensure they get to Reds’ matches on time as they missed three goals in the first 15 minutes, two from the home side.

Joshua Clarkin opened the scoring after two minutes when Thomas Walters’ corner landed on his head and Jordan Shaw made it two after 14 minutes.

Getting control of the ball in midfield is Jack Connor for Cambridge FC during The Reds 5-1 win over Taupō. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Taupō hit back with a goal from Joseph O’Donoghue following the restart but a second from Shaw after 26 minutes gave The Reds a 3-1 lead at the break.

Clarkin’s second 10 minutes into the second half sealed Taupō’s fate and Blake Taylor got the last with a heading assist from Clarkin.

Cambridge is now eight points clear after nine matches and have the week off the league for their Chatham Cup third round match in Auckland on Saturday against New Lynn’s Bay Olympic.

Taupō defender Sean Barbour attempts to clear the ball under pressure from Cambridge’s Joshua Clarkin in the box during The Reds 5-1 win against Taupō. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Waipā neighbours Te Awamutu AFC remain rooted to the bottom of the table following a 1-2 loss at The Stadium to Waikato Unicol. The home team started promisingly with a goal to Willem Dikmans after 16 minutes but proof football is a 90-minute game came with goals to Unicol in the 68th and 82nd minutes.

Thomas Walters goes on the burst down the right win for Cambridge FC during The Reds 5-1 win over Taupō. Photo: Mary Anne Gill.

Te Awamutu will be hoping to get its first win of the season against fellow stragglers Ngongotaha Lakes in Rotorua on Saturday. Something desperate is needed to kick-start the team’s season.

NRFL Southern Conference: Cambridge 5 (Josh Clarkin 2′, 50′, Jordan Shaw 14′, 26′, Blake Taylor 71′) Taupō 1 (Joe O’Donoghue 15′); Te Awamutu 1 (Willem Dikmans 16′) Waikato Unicol 2 (Kyay Morehu 68′, Marco Andres Estacio Arroyo 82′)

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