Hahndorf V Adelaide Budapest
A second half fightback by Adelaide Budapest ensured Hahndorf shared the points in their encounter for the 10th round of the South Australian Amateur Soccer League 2nd Division.
Despite persistent rain and slippery, muddy conditions, the match between Hahndorf and Adelaide Budapest was showered with goals in the opening twenty-five minutes. Budapest were the first to strike minutes from the kick-off, a speculative shot skipping on the greasy surface and cannoning off Hahndorf ‘keeper Nathaniel Brooke to fall for the Budapest forward to slot in.
However the lead was short lived when Hahndorf hit back. Forward Jesse Konstantinoff forged a run to the by-line and cut his pass back to Steve Ness, the midfielder striking cleanly to find the bottom right of goal. The teams exchanged further chances before the Magpies went ahead through Dan Hermel, the tricky winger swooping on a loose ball on the edge of the Budapest penalty area and finding the net with a lethal left foot strike.
Returning after a two-week sojourn, Steve Noble lead the Magpie backline of Michael Lewington, Ash Parr and Kyle Eglinton, the quartet finding conditions challenging and the Budapest forwards keen to find the target. Guest anchored the midfield, with Ness, Hermel and Kayne Stubing all involved in the combative possession for control of the middle. Brooke made some vital saves, knocking a stinging shot down before recovering the ball under pressure.
Leo Santangelo played up front but often dropped back to pick up the ball and he had several surging runs resulting in searching shots going wide of the Budapest goal. As the half drew to a close, a few willing tackles from both teams threatened to escalate but some stern words from the referee kept emotions from boiling over.
The Magpies started the second half brightly, holding the ball in the attacking third before Ness poked a shot over the bar. Budapest responded and Brooke was called upon to make two good saves in quick succession as the match and the rain opened up. Konstantinoff showed his skills, latching onto a neat through ball and beating two opponents but pulled his shot across the face of goal.
In defence, Noble stopped a potential threat on the edge of the penalty area with a fine tackle but soon after Hahndorf conceded a goal to Budapest, a long throw finding its way through the box and it was slotted away at the far post.
The goal inspired the visitors and their vocal supporters and they pushed forward again in search of an equaliser but found Noble in their path with another quality tackle. Guest was attracting plenty of the ball and was finding the conditions to his liking to provide a focal point in the centre for Hahndorf. Santangelo also produced some strong runs but could not beat the ‘keeper with a ranging efforts.
After watching his brother enjoying the mud and rain, Kieran Guest entered the match and had a positive impact almost straight away, the lanky forward getting on a break but shooting just wide with the ‘keeper to beat. Parr continued to impress along with Hermel, his fleet feet often keeping him one step ahead of the opposition on the slippery surface.
However, five minutes from time, Budapest equalised with a curled shot into the top corner, a deft move leaving the Hahndorf defence wrong-footed and opening up the goal. Hahndorf threw themselves forward to regain their lead and almost did in the final minutes. K.Guest made space and rifled a searing shot at goal but the Budapest ‘keeper made a tremendous diving save to deflect the goal-bound ball.
The entertaining 3-3 result gave both sets of fans something to cheer about on a chilly, rain swept day and also kept both teams clear of the relegation zone. Best on the day for Hahndorf was Luke Guest, a powerful presence on the park, with Steve Noble and Dan Hermel also giving strong performances.
The Hahndorf Reserves dominated large passages of play and a brace of goals to Chris Hyde led to the Magpies running out 4-1 winners in a sometimes spiteful encounter.
Sweeping and torrential rain tested the drainage system at the Pine Avenue arena to produce a playable surface that both teams took time to adjust to. Hahndorf pushed Budapest back from the outset with John Lawler, Tom Stevens, Rupert “Crusher” Lindon and Chris Sawers taking charge of the midfield and giving Chris Hyde and Kieran Guest opportunities up front. Hahndorf employed a shoot-on-sight policy in the treacherous conditions and had the Budapest ‘keeper scrambling on several occasions but the shots were often wayward by the Magpies.
Lawler created space and shot truly but the ball cannoned off both posts before being cleared by the relieved Budapest defenders. Hyde had a shot hit the bar and Lindon had two chances from acute angles that failed to find the net.
In defence Hahndorf were comfortable, experienced central pair Andy Craig and Matt Norris combining with Scott Breaker and Dan Mardle to leave ‘keeper Andy Jones barely getting a touch in the first half. Despite having the majority of the play it took till well over half an hour for the home team to find the net. A persistent build up drew Hyde onto the ball just wide of goal and he evaded a tackle before sliding the ball across the goal to nestle just inside the post.
In the second half the Magpies tried to increase their advantage but it was Budapest who had the best chance early on. A rasping shot from distance drew Jones into action and he tipped the long-range effort over the bar, serving a wake up call for the Magpies. Several heated moments threatened to erupt but cooler heads prevailed as Hahndorf added a second, Hyde again the scorer with a neat finish at the near post after a fine cross from Lawler.
Brad Coleman and Tim Staniford entered the match as Hahndorf looked to increase their lead. Moments after moving into the forward line Norris notched up Hahndorf’s third goal with a fine drive to round off a sweeping move. Budapest then hit back through a strange passage of play, players of both sides almost wrestling each other and forgetting to play the ball before it was crossed into the middle and a Budapest player drove it onto the net.
The win was a great result in trying conditions and maintains momentum for the Reserves as they look to improve their record in the second half of the season. Best on the day for the Magpies was Tom Stevens who was diligent in the midfield, with the two Chris’, Hyde and Sawers also in the frame with their goals.
Next week the Hahndorf Magpies face a difficult trip away to the Vipers while the Super C’s take on the Northern Wolves at Pine Avenue.