WOLLONGONG WOLVES v WESTERN RAGE
WOLVES SCORE SIX OF THE BEST IN CUP TIE
In a cup tie with eight goals in total and a two multiple scorers in Nicholas Duarte for the Wolves and Nicholas Benjamin for the Rage, the Wolves ran out 6-2 winners in a match with a late kick off.
The Wolves have previously played Western Rage, then known as Granville Rage in the 2008 season in the cup, with the western Sydney team running out surprise winners in a 5-4 penalty shoot-out following a 2-2 draw after extra time. However, on this occasion, it was different story, with the Wolves defeating the League Three side.
Western Rage had previously defeated Terrigal United 4-3 in an earlier Cup round and 3-0 versus Kemps Creek United. This was the Wolves first assignment.
With a team consisting of some first grade squad and Under 20s, it was a fairly comfortable outing even though the two goals scored by the Rage gave them a shot of confidence
The Wolves won the first corner kick of the match a few minutes after the team kicked off. The proceedings. with Duarte swinging it in. Noting of any note emanated and as the wolves began another early foray, Blake Mottram cleared. Before the Wolves’ Ryan Mrvcic produced a shot from distance. Mrvcic was a danger to the Rage as he cruised up and down the right flank with an impressive effort.
However, it was only seven minutes in when the Wolves went ahead. Evan Ball was at the right post to produce a low header from close vicinity that squeezed in.
A lifted ball into the box for the Rage was intended for the rampaging Julian Stojcevski, only try as he may, he could not make contact.
A penalty kick was won by Duarte who scampered in the penalty area, only to be taken down by Blake Mottram. He picked himself up and buried the ball into the net beating the custodian Sam Bortolazzo. Stojcevski brought the ball down the middle in an enterprising exchanging one-two passes with a number of players in an attempt to produce a further action.
At the other end Jake Lavalle, who was industrious and dangerous in the midfield, crossed for Denim Nou but unfortunately his shot went wide. Harrison Taranto, who was directly the play with his exact passing and ball winning efforts, burst into the box to keep the Rage on their toes.
Benjamin endeavoured to position himself for a shot but the ran away at the crucial time. However, a couple of minutes He received a long ball and he broke away from the defence to effect an effort that zoomed into the goal past custodian Hayden Durose. This was parity restored and a dent in the Wolves’ hope of a clean sheet. This was just after the half hour mark.
Seena Stevenson got the ball away to Mrvcic and he moved to win a corner kick. Scant time later, Taranto again charged into the penalty area. With Bortolazzo advancing, the Wolves’ captain stuck his effort narrowly wide.
Just on half time, Denim Nou made good ground after a quick Wolves’ break, before sending his forceful shot past the custodian into the goal to put his team back in front.
At the break , the Wolves led 3-1.
A goal keeping changed was enacted when Thomas Butkovic replaced Durose at half time.
A Rage free kick was a chance to get back into the game for the Rage early in the second half. Just outside the box, Joseph Carluccio took the kick. The ball eluded the defensive wall but traversed wide at the near post. Nou at the opposite end put his shot a little wide before Benjamin did well to achieve his brace with a top effort. Now it was 3-2 and this gave the Rage a shot of confidence.
However, Duarte added another when the ball was driven under the diving custodian and now the score was a two goal advantage.
Nou put a ball for Duarte but his shot was not on target and he was none too pleased.
Substitute Alessandro Tolomeo weaved his way into the box and subsequently formed a shot. It was well directed, but Butkovic was equal to the task, getting down to produce a good save.
Tempers got the better of some players as frustrations boiled over with the yellow cards being shown to Ben Glason and Nicholas Huidobro. Not long after, a suspect inconvenience was dealt out with up shot being that a red card was shown to the Rage captain.
Duarte finally achieved his hat trick with a good goal with fifteen minutes left on the clock.
The sixth goal was attributed to Mrvcic with a great angled short from the left that torpedoed into the goal.
With this result, the Wolves progress to the fifth round and now Western Rage have now to concentrate on working their way up the table of their competition.
Coach Luke Wilkshire - ‘it was a game that we could have performed better and had we done so we could have scored more and definitely not conceded. …. He (Nicholas) scored three and overall I think he can perform better but I’m happy we have got through the game… Sometimes these things happen and no one wants to see that (the skirmish)… We have done enough tonight… It was their grand final. If you give them a goal and a leg up then they will come at you…. I think in the end we got what we needed.’
Captain Harrison Taranto - ‘Thanks, I appreciate that. It is an honour (to be captain)…it got heated. We got a bit out of control and should have just played our game. We dropped to their level.. We should have been better… It was disappointing to concede but we got the six goals and go onto the next round.’
Hat trick scorer Nicholas Duarte - ‘it is always good to get onto the score sheet. It was a good challenge and I will take the three goals and a hat trick on any day… It was not ideal that they scored two goals, it was not what we wanted, we wanted clean sheet... it is football and you don’t know they (the opposition) will play… On to the next round.’
Rage brace scorer Nicholas Benjamin - ‘Thank you… I have worked hard on this on the training pitch. I tried my best and we have been working hard…. We came into the second half buzzing, ready to go, but unluckily it fell apart l…. On the skirmish – ‘we got sucked in, living in the moment. … 100 per cent enjoyed the game scored two, and will get a double quarter pounder on the way home.’ In the league - ‘We are struggling, we haven’t won a game and hopefully we can build on this from here.’
@ IAN McLENNAN PARK No.1
TUESDAY 3rd May 2022
8.15 p.m. Kick Off
WOLLONGONG WOLVES ….. 6
Nicholas Duarte 14’ pen, 54’, 75’, Evan Ball 7’, Denim Nou 44’ Ryan Mrvcic 86’
WESTERN RAGE……………. 2
Nicholas Benjamin 33’, 52’
Coach: Luke Wilkshire
1.Hayden Durose (GK) (13.Thomas Butkovic 46) 3. Ryan Mrvcic 5.Dax Kelly 6.Senna Stevenson (2.Daniel Goni) 12.Harrison Taranto (Capt.) 8.Ben Glason 10.Denim Nou (4.Nikola Djordjevic 63’) 14.Nicholas Duarte (9.Peter Simonoski 63) 18.Evan Ball 19.Jake Lavalle 25.Nav Darjani (24.Lachlan Scott 63)
Substitutes not used: nil
Yellow Cards: 14.Nicholas Duarte 41’ 18.Evan Ball 47’ Ben Glason 68’ 3.Ryan Mrvcic 86’
Red Cards: Nil
Coach: Greg Carluccio/Jarrod Carluccio
1.Samuel Bortolazzo 3.Christian Brigo 23.Daniel Cooper (20. Alessandro Tolomeo) 4.Declan Monro 21.Joseph Carluccio (Capt.) 15. Blake Mottram 17.Nicholas Benjamin (14.Nicolas Huidobro) 9.Guiseppe Camera (18.Michael Whalley) 5. Jason Najdovski ((22.Paul Borolazzo 72’) 19.Julian Stojcevski 13. Nikola Kremenovic
Substitutes Not Used: nil
Yellow Cards: 15.Blake Mottram 13’, 25.Julian Stojcevski 25’, 14. Nicholas Huidobro 68’
Red Cards: 21.Jason Carluccio 73’
Referee: Craig Fisher
By Malcolm Rowney