The Yass Redbacks had a mixed weekend of football right across all their grades last weekend, with only one of their four teams qualifying for the semi-final and making the upcoming grand finals this weekend. 

After finishing the home and away season in fourth position on the ladder with 11 wins, the Yass Redbacks State League Women’s Division 4 side won their semi-final against first-placed ANU FC, who had only lost one game for the season.

The SLW4 Redbacks inflicted a massive upset on the competition, recording a convincing 5-2 win against ANU on Sunday afternoon at Kaleen Oval.

Yass jumped out of the gates, scoring three first-half goals in the space of 10 minutes with Jacinta Murphy registering the opener in the 13th minute, followed by a brace to Danielle Condon in the 18th and 22nd minute. 

ANU managed to peg a goal back early in the second half to make it 3-1 in the 48th minute when Sarah Everett netted the ball, but two steady goals to Cara Armstrong in the 58th minute and another to Murphy in the 72nd minute closed all hope of a comeback.

The score line was made a little more respectable in the 78th minute when Frances Balfour scored an own goal for ANU, finishing the scoring at 5-2.

The Redbacks SLW4 side will come up against the second-placed Lanyon United this Sunday at 2pm at Harrison in the grand final.

Ingrid Davis, President of the Yass Redbacks and women’s coach, said the entire side are excited about playing off in the season decider this weekend.

“We are excited. It’s been a very tough season for the entire squad. It’s the first time we’ve been lucky enough to have our full team available for the semi’s. Leading up to it we had injuries and people away, so we’ve had an up and down season,” Davis said.

“We’ve had to play girls from lower divisions into that team to get into the top four. It’s been an entire squad effort. It was good to take out the top team ANU and we’re pretty confident for this weekend. 

“We’ve played Lanyon twice this season, once we lost badly and beat them the second time. We’re evenly matched but with players we’ve got available to us, we’re quietly confident. 

“Lanyon relies on two of their strikers whereas we’ve got strength right across all three lines, our defence, midfield and forwards. If we can shut down their main two attacking elements, we should be fairly good.”

The SLW6 side lost their semi-final 3-0 against the Monaro Panthers last Sunday afternoon at Kaleen and won’t feature in the grand final.

“They probably played their best game of the season. I did have to make the decision to not play players across both teams for the semi-finals because it’s just too hard. Monaro are a very good side and we got beaten by the better team on the day. We did our best on the day, but the more skilled team went through.”

Yass finished fourth in both State League Women’s competition and had to play the first-placed teams for a spot in the grand final.

In the State League Men’s, the Division 2 side lost 2-0 to second-placed Tuggeranong United at the University of Canberra fields on Saturday morning in the semi-final clash.

“We just fell at the last hurdle really. We should have won the first grade game, we let in a couple of easy goals,” Yass coach James Boulcott said.

“We were in front of them but we hit the post four times and the bar once. It was just one of those days where the ball couldn’t get in the back of the net.”

In the SLM Division 2 Reserves side, Yass lost 5-1 to Weston Molonglo in a game they were expecting to win.

The surprise losses in both the men’s grades means they will not be playing in the grand finals in 2022. 

“In the reserve game, we started off strong, but I think they just wanted it more. I’m disappointed but I guess it’s where we’re meant to be this year.

“We were one-nil up in the 38th minute then conceded two goals straight away before half-time. We got a bit complacent and after half-time we were pushing for a goal but when you push forward you leave yourself exposed at the back. 

“It didn’t help that we hadn’t had a game for three or four weeks and were lacking match fitness and practice.”

SLW4 Line-Up for Sunday’s Grand Final: 

  • Miki Brown
  • Eliza Hickey
  • Stacey Hardy
  • Amy Kominek
  • Katia Manton
  • Katrina Kerr
  • Renee O’Loughlan
  • Melanie Bullock
  • Jacinta Murphy – Coach
  • Danni Condon
  • Cara Harvey
  • Lucy Dwyer
  • Fran Balfour
  • Kaely Jol
  • Amanda Eccleston
  • Ingrid Davis – Coach

Good luck to the Redback women in this Sunday’s grand final!

Tim Warren