Round 13 vs Vic Uni Beavers
Another weeknight game saw Stop Out playing Vic Uni Beavers for the second time this season. This time Vic Uni brought a few new players and came out to play instead of just defend. We started positively, with the central midfield partnership of Troy and Marty dominating the centre. We utilised the perfect playing conditions to the max, spreading the ball wide numerous times and making the most of the skill out wide. In the first half we created several good chances before Byron calmly slotted his first goal of the season after an initial deflection. Pom continued to wreak havoc on the Uni left back every time he got hold of the ball despite the defender's overly aggressive tactics. Every time a Stop Out player came near him with the ball, he would either shoulder charge them in the back, hack at their ankles or chop their kneecaps! We continued to pile plenty of pressure on the Uni team throughout the first half, directing much of the pressure through Troy. Young sensation Hayden Taylor had yet another notable performance on the left wing, running the line and putting in some great crosses for Pom to direct several powerful headers towards the goal. Inevitably, our second goal arrived with Byron needing no more than a half chance to score his second goal of the game. Despite dominating the first half, Vic Uni showed some attacking flair through their new central midfield player and captain who utilised the space between the midfield and defence. Our hard work in the first half paid off after a shot from Cam was blocked and big brother Adam was the first to react, heading the third goal of the evening. The half had one more twist in store, when Marty picked the ball up just inside the opposition's half; he took the ball past 2 players heading towards the left corner flag before cutting towards the goal and past the last defender. The defender having been completely outclassed decided that his only option was a professional foul, bringing Marty down with a cynical foul just outside the box. Unfortunately, the defender's unsporting actions were rewarded as nothing further was gained by us. In the second half, we continued to attack in waves, and should have scored many more than the three we already had. Fifteen minutes in we started getting complacent and put a few slack passes in. Vic's midfielders pushed forward and our defence dropped back, too far back and eventually we conceded a goal. Following our fourth goal from centre back Aaron, we got complacent again. We conceded a free kick on Vic Uni's own goal line. A long free kick and an even longer flick on had the ball in the back of the net again for Vic. Vic made a change putting their Jack Russell from left back up front. An innocuous ball heading out was being guided out by Muz, with the Jack Russell biting his ankles and shoving him in the back the whole way before one shove pushed Murray over the top of the ball allowing the forward to gather the ball. Any ref, other than Vic Uni's, would have called one of the first six fouls against the forward. Unfortunately he decided to call a penalty as Murray tried to get the ball back again; the penalty was converted leaving the score line 4-3, which was very flattering for Vic. Following this wake up call, we tightened up and played the last 10 minutes with the flair and dominance of the first half.We were back in complete control again and came close to scoring again a couple of times. Marty hit the bar, and Cam and Troy interchanged with each other well before the defence cleared off the line. Man of the match Pom continued his rich vein of form with a combination of sensible passes, great control, and scintillating runs. Final score ended 4-3 to Stop Out.
Final score - Vic Uni 3 - 4 Stop Out
Goal scorers - Byron Gill 2, Adam van Baarle 1, Aaron Ray 1 Man of the Match - Anusak Koontep
Round 12 v Tawa at Onepoto
Tawa remain our bogey team after a disappointing day out at Onepoto. Tawa won the coin throw and elected to go with the marginal cross wind in what can be described as favourable conditions. Uncharacteristically, we started slow and continued to be outplayed down our right hand side of the pitch where the ball drifted due to the wind. It took a little while to settle our nerves in what was to be the biggest game of the season. Unfortunately by the time our nerves had settled and we had woken up, Tawa had put the ball in the net after their attack was initially repelled by our keeper - the ball fell kindly for their captain to strike home from inside the 18 yard box. We pushed forward in search of an equalising goal and were undone for a second time with a wind assisted long ball chased down and scored by the Tawa forwards. We made a substitution which paid dividends after a period of sustained possession. With the out to the right hand side, some quick footwork from Pom set him free, and a smart pass inside left brought us to within 25 yards from the Tawa goal. Marty received the pass from Pom before taking it round one player before striking it from 20 yards with the left foot into the wind. The shot was hit perfectly and carried a straight trajectory for the far post before curling into the far side of the goal past a hapless and stunned keeper. Our form for the rest of the half was good, with Tawa contained for the most part until we conceded another soft goal through lack of marking. After the break, the wind had picked up to gale force which certainly helped Tawa with their clearances. A bad day was made worse after 20 minutes of the second half when Tawa broke out of their half and put an innocuous cross which wasn't dealt with by us leading to Tawa's fourth goal of the day. For the remainder of the half we threw caution to the wind and pushed forward in numbers. We attacked relentlessly, but Tawa defended resiliently against the pressure before we broke down the right hand side. Pom collected the ball and beat the defender before racing into the 18 yard box and finishing with coolness and power. The game ended 4-2 to Tawa, which was maybe a bit flattering to the home side.
Final Score - Tawa 4 - 2 Stop Out Goal Scorers - Marty Dutton 1, Anusuk Koontep 1 Man of the Match - Murray Johnson
Round 11 v Karori Aces at Te Whiti
We were going into this game with some confidence after the previous encounter with this Karori side. We braved the conditions at a wet and miserable looking Te Whiti park. With absences including midfield duo Marty and Byron, commanding centre back Aaron and the ever reliable Ed at left back the third team were stretched but by no means any weaker.
The game started with the ball getting stuck in the puddles and mud all over the surface. Karori did their best to quickly get a hold of possession and press us into our own half. They were keeping the ball well but the back 4 of Nathaniel, Murry, Ed and Isaac held their nerve and didn't concede in the first half, thanks also to the strategically placed mud and puddles. We managed to catch them on the break and after a good ball from Sam Chan, Adam Reynard was able to set up Adam van Baarle to calmly slot home while under pressure from two defenders. The next goal came not long after with a scramble in the corner leading to the ball dropping to Darren's feet for him to hammer home. 2 nil but the Karori team weren't out of it just yet, Hayden Taylor and Bom were chasing hard and tracking all game in the middle of the park and won us possession at key times. Adam Reynard was then put through on goal after lurking on their last man and placed the ball into the bottom corner to make it 3 nil going into the break.
Stop Out kicked on the way they ended the 1st spell with some good possession and excellent play down both wings. Adam van Baarle narrowly missed with a picturesque header off a corner, and not long after man of the match Hayden Taylor scored off a nicely drilled corner from Adam Reynard to make it 4-0. Karori scored a consolation goal, before Adam van Baarle played a ball through to partner in crime Adam Reynard to slot home and make it 5-1. The lads went home with their heads held high and their kit thoroughly soaked after another convincing win. Keep 'em coming!
Final Score - Stop Out 5 - 1 Karori Aces
Scorers - Adam Reynard 2, Adam van Baarle 1, Hayden Taylor 1, Darren Priddey 1
Man of the Match - Hayden Taylor
Round 10 v Seatoun Gulls at Wakefield
We went into our second game against Seatoun with confidence having come off the back of a fantastic performance against Island Bay. The game was played on a cold Monday evening, and the conditions underfoot were wet from the rain prior to kick off. We knew that the ball was going to travel very fast on the artificial surface. We started the game with the kick off and immediately created some great openings down both wings. Our midfielders were given time and space to dominate the possession and play fluid attacking football. As with the first round against Seatoun, their players barely touched the ball in the first 15 minutes other than to take a free kick from a dubious offside decision (Ben ran past the defender and was judged to have received his own pass in an offside position). We had several shots on target which the Seatoun keeper spilled in the conditions, one of which was followed up by and converted by Adam Reynard. Our period of total domination culminated in several more goals in quick succession before Ben picked up the ball on the right hand of midfield. He decided to run at the defenders, twisting four of them inside and out before smashing the ball in the back of the net from an improbable angle. We went in to the half time break 4-0 up and cruising. In the second half we continued to dominate possession, and went 5-0 up soon after. Seatoun made a few substitutions and made more progress towards our goal. Seatoun only ever looked like scoring on two occasions. The first was when their forward received the ball and went on a run towards the defence. The forward shot the ball straight against our defender's arm from less than 1 metre away. Regardless of the fact that our defender had his arm by his side and absolutely zero chance of getting out the way of the ball, the referee blew for a penalty which was converted well by their half time sub. The other time was an attack down their right hand side where a cross was taken down by the forward and put into the net. Finally a decision went in our favour and the forward was judged to have handled the ball. In the last 20 minutes we went back to totally dominating the territory and possession of the ball. Fifteen minutes from the end, and with his last touch of the ball for the game, Hazzy pulled out a spectacular 20 yard turn and volley into the bottom left hand corner to put us 6-1 up. Sam and Ben went out to the wide midfield positions for the final 15 minutes of the game, and went back to running rings round the opposition, linking well with all players around them. It was only fitting then that Sam received a long range pass from Ben and calmly cut inside the defence before scoring the final goal of the game with a thunderous strike. A fitting way to end what was possibly the best all round team performance we have had this season.
Final score - Seatoun 1 - 7 Stop Out
Goal scorers - Adam van Baarle 2, Paul Haswell 2, Adam Reynard 1, Ben Rammell 1, Sam Chan 1
Man of the match - Ben Rammell
Round 9 v Island Bay at Hutt Park
Coming into this match we knew we were in for possibly the hardest game of the season. Having played Island Bay once before, we were determined to be the first team to take points off the leaders. We went into the game confident and started well. The first half was fairly even with some good quality passing football being played by both teams. If anything we played the better game going forward, with Island Bay happy to pass the ball around the backs. After a few attacks we eventually broke the deadlock with a goal by the hard working Hazzy. We continued to play well until just before half time when a strong 50/50 tackle broke for Island Bay, before a clear push from their forward in the penalty box was not picked up by the ref allowing the forward a clear shot on goal to bring them level. After the break, we started confidently again but were put under some pressure going into the wind. Some really good, and committed football was played in the first 25 minutes of the second half before Island Bay started to get frustrated at complete non-domination of the game which they are used to in this league. Their lack of discipline started to show, with numerous niggly, and several late tackles creeping into their play. With 15 minutes to go, we broke again down the middle of the park where we had dominated all game, and a cross ball found Isaac who went round the keeper; the ball was drifting slightly wide before Hazzy followed up from behind to slot the ball in from close range. The remainder of the game was played out with end to end action including their equaliser which came from a defensive clearance into the wind. The classic long ball was deployed by Island Bay, and the keeper who had been outstanding all game, was blinded by a late afternoon sun. The ball ricoched off his body and was put in with the knee of an oncoming Island Bay player. With barely 2 minutes left on the clock, we broke again through the middle with Hazzy chipping the last defender only for him to raise his arm and stop the ball. The resulting free kick was going over the wall and inexplicably, the Island Bay player in the wall, sensing danger from the free kick, jumped, raised his arms above his head and stopped the ball in the penalty box. The referee was poorly placed and said he could not see the handball so we were left wondering what may have been. End score a very respectable 2-2.
Final score Stop Out 2 - 2 Island Bay
Goal scorer - Paul Haswell 2
Man of the match - Aaron Ray/Paul Haswell
Round 8 v Olympic at Wellington College
Our Thursday evening game against Olympic proved to be completely different to what we expected. From the kick off it was immediately apparent that our opposition had borrowed a few players from their higher league teams. They were passing the ball round extremely well. However, we knew this was a possibility and made sure we doubled up on the more skilful players. Defensively, we were superb in the first half. Whenever any player got through there was someone else ready to make a tackle. The opposition were forced to shoot from long range. We were able to play some really nice passing football on the artificial turf and managed to go 1-0 up. The end to end football continued throughout the rest of the half, and we were able to capitalise on several opportunities with two defenders (Nathaniel and Aaron) both getting on the score sheet, as well as Hayden (man of the match) who managed to pressurise the opposition into making mistakes. We went in 4-0 up at half time. After the interval, we came out with the wind at our backs and again were able to string numerous passes together playing from one side of the pitch to the other. Hayden continued where he left off in the first half by chasing every ball that went anywhere near him (and winning the vast majority of them). Olympic began to crumble in the second half following sustained periods of pressure from us. Every time we picked up the ball, we looked like we could score. We scored a further 7 times during the second half including a mazy solo run from Marty, a run by Sam Chan followed by a cutback for Hayden to curl the ball into the top right hand corner, and a combination of passes leading to an unmarked Dan to fire the ball in. Overall a very satisfactory performance, and an extremely good result which leaves us second in the table. A big thanks has to go to the Olympic referee who managed to be strong, decisive and impartial.
Final score - Olympic 1-11 Stop Out
Goal Scorers - Hayden Taylor 4, Adam van Baarle 2, Nathaniel Stewart 2, Marty Dutton 1, Aaron Ray 1, Dan Snethlage 1
Man of the Match - Hayden Taylor
Round 7 v Marist Skins at Crawford Green
Stop out thirds got back to winning ways on Saturday, reclaiming second place in the table with a hard fought win away against Marist Skins. We kicked off with a strong, cold Southerly wind at our backs, immediately pressurising the Marist players who looked a bit lost at the pace the game started. During the first half the ball did break several times for Marist, whose forward line showed some great touches and looked to be a real threat when they had the ball. The forwards were unfortunate not to receive better service from their midfield and defence throughout the match. We had some decent shots, and crosses in the first half, but we were unable to capitalise on the wind as much as we would have liked to. Disaster struck midway through the half, when a Marist player was pulled down for a penalty. Inconceivably, Marist went 1-0 up. Stop Out responded immediately with a goal bound header from Chris Murphy cleared off the line by the Marist defence. Our luck changed after a period of determination (and a bit of luck) when Ed lobbed the keeper from the edge of the box into the goal. Controversy followed as the Marist keeper felt the ball went over, not in the goal. Several Marist players concurred with the referee that the goal should stand, and, as the referee quite rightly pointed out, had Marist supplied goal nets for their home game it would have been clear if the goal was in or not. We went into the half time break slightly disappointed to be level and playing into the wind for the next 45 minutes. In the second half, playing into the wind, we managed to play the better controlled football, but inevitably against a strong wind, the game was more evenly poised. The Marist forwards were guilty of missing a couple of relatively easy chances. Finally the deadlock was broken when the Marist keeper dropped the ball under a 50/50 challenge. The game continued for 15-20 seconds before the ball broke for Marty to score; the Marist keeper upon seeing the goal complained to the referee long and loud enough for the goal to be disallowed. With a few minutes to go, our pressure paid off once more, and a cross from the left hand eluded the Marist keeper and defence, and an unmarked Isaac was able to register his first goal of the season. The match had one final twist when a long, wind assisted kick from a Marist player flicked off the head of a Stop Out defender at the edge of the 18 yard box. The header was goal bound for the top right hand corner with plenty of speed. Somehow our keeper, with a lightening quick response, managed to get a strong hand to the ball and tip it over the bar to ensure the game finished 1-2 in Stop Out's favour.
Final score - Marist 1 - 2 Stop Out
Goal Scorers - Ed Griffin, Isaac Murphy
Man of the Match - Marty Dutton (as chosen by birthday boy/honorary manager for the day, Adam Reynard)
Round 6 v Vic Uni Beavers at Hutt Park
This had all the signs of being a great game; two teams in second and third place in the league respectively and on equal points. We were expecting a young, dynamic University team to turn up and play against us. Unfortunately, the Beavers turned up to Hutt Park with 11 defenders and set out for a draw from the first minute of the game. Again in the first few minutes of the game, we looked far and away the better side despite some loose passing at times. We managed to break the opponents thick defensive wall on several occasions before a searing run from Adam Reynard resulted in a fantastic goal from a tight angle to put us up within 20 minutes. After this, we became frustrated by a number of late challenges by the opposition which went unpunished, and seeral dives that wouldn't have looked out of place on the diving board at the London Olympics. Our increasing frustrations were further compounded when Uni managed to put the ball in the goal with what was clearly a handball. The referee wasn't in a position to see the handball, and the seriously unsportsman like behaviour of the opposition showed once more as they claimed the goal rather than admitting the handball. Our bad day was made worse when we conceded a second soft goal after a mix up between keeper and defence. Fortunately, half time arrived and we knew that with the wind behind us we could make inroads into the sea of green defenders. We came out in the second half all guns blazing and were unfortunate not to score on several occasions. The goal did eventually come, and it was definitely worth waiting for. Adam van Baarle who had reluctantly moved into right midfield to cover an injury picked up the ball inside the opposition's half before drilling a shot past the hapless keeper from the corner of the 18 yard box. Upon reflection, we could have, maybe should have scored more, but with the injury list the length it currently is 2 all isn't a bad result. We remain third in the league with a tough game against Marist (who claimed second place with a win against Tawa) next weekend.
Final score - Stop Out 2 - 2 Vic Uni Beavers
Goal scorers - Adam Reynard 1, Adam van Baarle 1
MOM - Adam van Baarle
Round 5 v Tawa AC at Hutt Park
Having played in the same league as Tawa for the past 3 seasons, we know that every game we play against them is going to be tough both mentally and physically; this game was no exception. We won the coin toss and elected to go against the elements in the first half. Tawa, who are arguably the best passing side we have faced, started the more positive of the two teams showing their quality and hunger for winning games (particularly against us). Their tactics to pass the ball wide, use the space and cut out the central midfield area appeared to be effective to a point. However, some resiliant defending on our part meant that we were able to weather the first 15 minutes without conceding a goal. We started the game without our usual rock (Murray) at centre back, and were unlucky enough to get injuries to both centre backs on the day meaning a midfield reshuffle to give the injured players some time to recover. Following the reshuffle, we came into our own and started injecting pace and controlled aggression into our play along with some decent passing and attacking opportunities. The remainder of the half was a hard fought, physical but fair contest and we went into the break at 0-0. All credit to both the referees that controlled the game, as they did a fantastic job of allowing the game to flow. After the break we started strongly and fought a hard contest against a very well organised team. We managed to go a goal up after 20 minutes and looked to be the better side. Half way through the half, Tawa made an inspired substitution, putting their manager Jason up front. We failed to mark the new entry, and he ran through and scored with this first touch of the ball. All was not lost, and we continued to play some great football, and kept the pressure on. We were unable to capitalise any further; Isaac having a goal bound shot cleared off the line and several corners that were deal with well by the opposition's defence. Disaster struck 15 mins from time, when a hopeful punt from midfield was latched on by the striker who managed to get a head on the ball before the keeper claimed it. The ball could have gone anywhere, but fell nicely for the striker to nod home the winner. For the last 10 minutes we threw everything at Tawa; the attitude of the players was fantastic and this was epitomised by Ed who won everything that came near to him (as well as most things that didn't). We pushed further and further forward in the search for the elusive goal, and ended up with a series of 6 corners. Sadly it wasn't out day and we were unable to capitalise on any of the corners.
Final Score - Stop Out 1 - 2 Tawa AC
Goal scorers - Adam van Baarle 1
Man of the match - Cam Ross
Round 4 v Karori Aces at Karori Park
The fourth game of the season was at Karori. We got to the groundearly in preparation for the 12.30 kick off; the majority of Karori (the home team) turned up at 12.15 and the final players came out of the changing room two minutes to kick off time. In complete contrast, we were warmed up and ready to go straight from the kick off in wet and slippery conditions. Karori took the initial kick off, and our strikers immediately put the sort of pressure on the opposition players that has encapsulated our season so far. Stop out again had the vast majority of the possession, and even when we didn't have the ball we pressured the opposition into mistakes. The pressure paid off and we managed to score several goals in quick succession including 3 headed goals from corners. The conditions made for difficult passing; a number skipped off the surface and caught players out including a few crosses that went straight through the box.....millimeters from getting a goal-bound touch from the striker. Throughout the game, we reacted to every ball and made sure that if we didn't win the initial ball we did win the second one - this attitude was personified by Adam van Baarle up front and his partner in crime, Man of the match Adam Reynard. We went into the break 5-0 up and cruising. After we came out we continued to push for more goals but were denied several times by poor shooting and the cross bar. Again this week, being so far ahead we lost our shape towards the end of the game on the hunt for goals. Hopefully against the stronger teams we can build the pressure, score the goals and retain our shape. Towards the end of the game we found the net a further 4 times to end the game 9-0 winners.
Final Score - Karori Aces 0 - 9 Stop Out
Goal scorers - Adam van Baarle 3, Adam Reynard 2, Cam Ross 1, Ed Griffin 1, Dan Snethlage 2
MOM - Adam Reynard
Round 3 v Seatoun Gulls at Hutt Park
Seatoun were promoted into Capital 8 this season so we knew that this was going to be a tough game. The instructions for the game were to keep hold of the ball, make Seatoun do the running, and keep the passing simple. We started the game with the kick off and strung a succession of passes together. The opposition did not get to touch the ball for the first 10 minutes.....when they finally did get a touch, it was to kick the ball out. Stop out continued to dominate possession in the first half with a controlled passing game, and managed to go a goal up following sustained pressure. Our midfield dominated the game from start to finish and linked well with both the defence and attackers, particularly down the right hand side, where Cam and Nathaniel tormented the Seatoun defence with overlapping runs, 360 degree passes and great crosses. We went into half time 3 - 0 up. After the break we came out against the wind and continued to play good passing football despite giving all the subs a run. Not content with being 3 goals up we pushed forward in search of more goals and at times were slightly guilty of neglecting our defensive duties. Fortunately, we had Murray to thank on several occasions for helping us to keep another clean sheet. We eventually got our 4th goal, and despite having more chances 4 - 0 is how the score ended up.
Final score – Stop Out 4 – 0 Seatoun
Goal scorers - Cam Ross 1, Own goal, Adam Reynard 1, Adam van Baarle 1
Man of the match - Murray Johnstone
Round 2 v Island Bay at Wakefield artificial
Although we had the majority of the possession and did much of the movement, we found ourselves 1-0 down against the run of play very early in the game. We found it difficult to adjust to a wet surface that was extremely quick. We pressed on but were unable to convert several chances (although we had a goal disallowed after a corner for some reason). We continued to push for the equaliser but unfortunately went 2-0 down after a period of fairly even play. We were passing well, but holding onto the ball too long or panicking when in possession - the opposition were moving well and seemed to have a player spare to pass to. A disappointing element was the gamesmanship of the Island Bay keeper who insisted on walking slowly to the ball when retrieving it, and walking to the furthest point he could to take the kick - the referee spoke to the player on several occasions but did not take any decisive action which allowed him to continue the delay. After a further period of sustained pressure, we were rewarded with a free kick on the edge of the box which Murray fired into the top corner. Everyone on the pitch knew it was in and several of the Island Bay players vocalised this, but for some reason the referee decided not to award the goal. This decision was further compounded when we went 3-0 down which was a bitter blow on a night that wasn't meant to be. Late in the game, our persistence paid off after Byron (man of the match) made a run down the right hand side of the pitch before cutting the ball back for Marty to score in the top right hand corner from the edge of the box.
Final score Island Bay 3-1 Stop Out
Goal scorer - Marty Dutton 1
Man of the match - Byron Gill
Round 1 v Olympic at Hutt Park
We didn't know what to expect from this Olympic side who turned up with a squad of over 20 players. The game started well and we passed the ball in a controlled fashion on the ground. Our forward line ran rings round the opposition who simply could not handle their movement. We scored after 30 seconds when a fluid passing break down the left hand side was converted. After this we consolidated, settled down well and played good possession football. Stop out had 80% of the possession and totally dominated the game from start to finish. We could have been 2-0 up after as many minutes, but the goal scorer was marginally offside when the ball was played to him. Further tenacious play led to another goal; the ball was put behind the defence who tried to shield it out of play. The midfield chased the ball and stopped it going out for a goal kick before a perfectly weighted cross gave Aaron his first goal of the season. We went into half time 6-0 up. The second half was much the same, with total dominance and a battery of shots on the opposition's goal. The attitude of the team was 10/10, and if anything we lost a bit of shape trying to bury even more goals. End score 10-0 to stop Out with 6 different goal scorers.
Final score Stop Out 10 - 0 Olympic
Goal scorers - Marty Dutton 2, Cam Ross 3, Adam Reynard 2, Aaron Ray 1, Jonno Eatwell 1, Adam van Baarle 1
Man of the match - Ed Griffin/Dan Snethlage