Mid-table teams provide highlights

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MID-TABLE clashes took centre stage in Gisborne Championship football on Saturday.

Lytton High School beat Sunshine Brewery Wainui Sharks on their own patch, 4-2; Gisborne Boys’ High School came from a goal down — for the first time in the league this season — to beat Wairoa Athletic, in Wairoa, 4-1; and Thistle Vintage beat ShipWreck Bohemians 3-2, but not before enduring some nervous moments in the last 15 minutes.

Lytton went one up against Sharks in the 15th minute when striker Ryan Anderson met a Merlin Parsons through-ball and hit an 18-metre scorcher, his power-shooting having been a training work-on.

Jake Theron, who transferred to Wainui from Thistle during the week, was among three Wainui Demons players helping out the Sharks. In the 25th minute, he made a run from the right for a through-ball, and smacked in a left-footed shot to equalise.

In the 35th, central midfielder Cole Devonport — one of two policemen in the side (the other being goalkeeper Cameron Cairns) — restored Lytton’s lead. The right-footed Devonport made a run from midfield and from 25 metres out smacked a left-footed shot into the top left corner of the goal.

Lytton went 3-1 up when left-midfielder Matt Hatten reached the byline and drove the ball low and hard across the goal, where it took a deflection into the net.

Just before the break, Wainui midfielder Jimmy Walker, Theron’s neighbour and another helper from the Demons, broke through for a one-on-one with the keeper and picked his spot to close it to 3-2.

In the second half, Lytton tried to press home their advantage. Wainui held out and continued to create the odd chance, but 15 minutes from time Lytton got the two-goal cushion they wanted.

Devonport received the ball just inside the Wainui half. He advanced down the right wing and cut in towards goal. A Lytton attacker was in the middle of the penalty area and the Wainui keeper, aware of this, left enough room for Devonport to squeeze his shot between him and the near post.

Devonport, Parsons and Anderson were standout performers in a spirited team effort from Lytton.

For Wainui, new signing Daniel Burn had a useful introduction, coming on in defence in the second half.

Theron, Walker and another Demons regular, left midfielder Mana Taumaunu, put in good shifts, while Barry McCarthy was tireless up and down the right.

Diego Pedrioli was hard to get past at rightback, and late in the game helped out in a more central role.

Lytton’s win puts them in sixth place in the Championship, three points behind fifth-placed Sharks.

In Wairoa, Athletic went ahead through a goal to Matt Webb.

Gisborne Boys’ High equalised when centreback Ollie Aldridge scored with a free-kick, a fiercely hit left-footer from 18 metres out in front.

Jack Fenn, usually a striker but used as an attacking midfielder to add experience to the Boys’ High midfield effort, scored the goal that gave his side the halftime lead.

In the second half, right-footed striker Tommy Peterson played a wall pass with a midfielder before taking the ball into the Wairoa penalty area and scoring with a strong left-footed shot.

Aldridge capped an outstanding defensive display by scoring the fourth Boys’ High goal, from the penalty spot.

Fenn and Peterson also shone in a solid team effort, as did midfielder-cum-left-wingback Marco Mittermayr.

Coach Sebastian Itman Bocchi was especially pleased with his team’s comeback . . . the first time this season they had won coming from a goal down.

They play a Championship game against their second team at the Rectory today, to allow them a few days’ rest before the Super 8 football tournament in New Plymouth next week.

Wairoa’s man of the match on Saturday was goalkeeper Tim Howard.

The Boys’ High win lifted the school side to fourth, level on points with Demons but behind on goal difference, while Wairoa have yet to add to their one-win/one-draw record.

Thistle Vintage and ShipWreck Bohemians had a ding-dong battle in the middle to lower reaches of the division.

Vintage dominated the first half and were 2-0 up at halftime.

Thistle man of the match Luis Luibon crossed from the left for Shaun Leeper to head home in the 15th minute.

Nippy young English striker Andre Riley scored an opportunist goal in the 43rd and, by all accounts, Thistle could have been ahead by more at that stage.

Early in the second half, Bohemians left-flank raider Gary Cunningham cut in to collect midfielder Matt Sowerby’s through-ball and placed it past the keeper.

Midfielder Dave Watson gave Thistle breathing space when in the 56th minute he finished off a four-or-five-man passing movement to make it 3-1.

Fifteen minutes from the end, Bohs everywhere-man Stevie White scored to set up a hectic final quarter-hour.

Thistle player-coach John Van Helden says Vintage aren’t called Vintage for nothing . . . they were starting to feel the pace. The Bohs, meanwhile, had their blood up, but couldn’t score again.

Standout players for Thistle were Luibon, Riley, Watson, attack-minded midfielder Max Mika, committed centreback Tim Hofman and goalkeeper Charlie Kapene, who made some crucial saves in the second half.

The Bohs were well served by an outstanding defensive effort from rightback Andrew Lamont, leftback Tyson Maraki and centrebacks Caleb Craig and Chris Cockburn.

Keeper Eru Rawiri kept his side in the game with some fine saves in the first half, when they were under pressure, and in midfield Hayden Donnelly, Ma Mahuika and Sowerby had a good mix of energy, composure and creativity, with White popping up everywhere for good measure.

United stay top of the league after their 4-1 win against Riverina, while Thistle Massive stay three points behind, with a 13-3 win against GBHS (2).

In the conference, Three Rivers Medical Bohemians and ITM Thistle drew 1-1, GBHS (3) beat Lytton (2) 2-1 and Heavy Equipment Services United (3) beat Smash Palace Shockers 4-1.

MID-TABLE clashes took centre stage in Gisborne Championship football on Saturday.

Lytton High School beat Sunshine Brewery Wainui Sharks on their own patch, 4-2; Gisborne Boys’ High School came from a goal down — for the first time in the league this season — to beat Wairoa Athletic, in Wairoa, 4-1; and Thistle Vintage beat ShipWreck Bohemians 3-2, but not before enduring some nervous moments in the last 15 minutes.

Lytton went one up against Sharks in the 15th minute when striker Ryan Anderson met a Merlin Parsons through-ball and hit an 18-metre scorcher, his power-shooting having been a training work-on.

Jake Theron, who transferred to Wainui from Thistle during the week, was among three Wainui Demons players helping out the Sharks. In the 25th minute, he made a run from the right for a through-ball, and smacked in a left-footed shot to equalise.

In the 35th, central midfielder Cole Devonport — one of two policemen in the side (the other being goalkeeper Cameron Cairns) — restored Lytton’s lead. The right-footed Devonport made a run from midfield and from 25 metres out smacked a left-footed shot into the top left corner of the goal.

Lytton went 3-1 up when left-midfielder Matt Hatten reached the byline and drove the ball low and hard across the goal, where it took a deflection into the net.

Just before the break, Wainui midfielder Jimmy Walker, Theron’s neighbour and another helper from the Demons, broke through for a one-on-one with the keeper and picked his spot to close it to 3-2.

In the second half, Lytton tried to press home their advantage. Wainui held out and continued to create the odd chance, but 15 minutes from time Lytton got the two-goal cushion they wanted.

Devonport received the ball just inside the Wainui half. He advanced down the right wing and cut in towards goal. A Lytton attacker was in the middle of the penalty area and the Wainui keeper, aware of this, left enough room for Devonport to squeeze his shot between him and the near post.

Devonport, Parsons and Anderson were standout performers in a spirited team effort from Lytton.

For Wainui, new signing Daniel Burn had a useful introduction, coming on in defence in the second half.

Theron, Walker and another Demons regular, left midfielder Mana Taumaunu, put in good shifts, while Barry McCarthy was tireless up and down the right.

Diego Pedrioli was hard to get past at rightback, and late in the game helped out in a more central role.

Lytton’s win puts them in sixth place in the Championship, three points behind fifth-placed Sharks.

In Wairoa, Athletic went ahead through a goal to Matt Webb.

Gisborne Boys’ High equalised when centreback Ollie Aldridge scored with a free-kick, a fiercely hit left-footer from 18 metres out in front.

Jack Fenn, usually a striker but used as an attacking midfielder to add experience to the Boys’ High midfield effort, scored the goal that gave his side the halftime lead.

In the second half, right-footed striker Tommy Peterson played a wall pass with a midfielder before taking the ball into the Wairoa penalty area and scoring with a strong left-footed shot.

Aldridge capped an outstanding defensive display by scoring the fourth Boys’ High goal, from the penalty spot.

Fenn and Peterson also shone in a solid team effort, as did midfielder-cum-left-wingback Marco Mittermayr.

Coach Sebastian Itman Bocchi was especially pleased with his team’s comeback . . . the first time this season they had won coming from a goal down.

They play a Championship game against their second team at the Rectory today, to allow them a few days’ rest before the Super 8 football tournament in New Plymouth next week.

Wairoa’s man of the match on Saturday was goalkeeper Tim Howard.

The Boys’ High win lifted the school side to fourth, level on points with Demons but behind on goal difference, while Wairoa have yet to add to their one-win/one-draw record.

Thistle Vintage and ShipWreck Bohemians had a ding-dong battle in the middle to lower reaches of the division.

Vintage dominated the first half and were 2-0 up at halftime.

Thistle man of the match Luis Luibon crossed from the left for Shaun Leeper to head home in the 15th minute.

Nippy young English striker Andre Riley scored an opportunist goal in the 43rd and, by all accounts, Thistle could have been ahead by more at that stage.

Early in the second half, Bohemians left-flank raider Gary Cunningham cut in to collect midfielder Matt Sowerby’s through-ball and placed it past the keeper.

Midfielder Dave Watson gave Thistle breathing space when in the 56th minute he finished off a four-or-five-man passing movement to make it 3-1.

Fifteen minutes from the end, Bohs everywhere-man Stevie White scored to set up a hectic final quarter-hour.

Thistle player-coach John Van Helden says Vintage aren’t called Vintage for nothing . . . they were starting to feel the pace. The Bohs, meanwhile, had their blood up, but couldn’t score again.

Standout players for Thistle were Luibon, Riley, Watson, attack-minded midfielder Max Mika, committed centreback Tim Hofman and goalkeeper Charlie Kapene, who made some crucial saves in the second half.

The Bohs were well served by an outstanding defensive effort from rightback Andrew Lamont, leftback Tyson Maraki and centrebacks Caleb Craig and Chris Cockburn.

Keeper Eru Rawiri kept his side in the game with some fine saves in the first half, when they were under pressure, and in midfield Hayden Donnelly, Ma Mahuika and Sowerby had a good mix of energy, composure and creativity, with White popping up everywhere for good measure.

United stay top of the league after their 4-1 win against Riverina, while Thistle Massive stay three points behind, with a 13-3 win against GBHS (2).

In the conference, Three Rivers Medical Bohemians and ITM Thistle drew 1-1, GBHS (3) beat Lytton (2) 2-1 and Heavy Equipment Services United (3) beat Smash Palace Shockers 4-1.

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