GNL. The Tall Timbers Smithton Saints men and women met with traditional rivals City Marians in the Greater Northern League in Smithton on Saturday.
In the men’s match, the competitive nature of both sides was evident from the start as they pushed the boundaries and tested the patience of the umpires.
City Marians captured offensive possession, pressing the Smithton defensive unit into action.
Nigel Kingston stood strong in defence, assisted by Nathan Johns and Joe Coombs, impeding the opposition.
The visitors continued to apply offensive pressure resulting in a City Marians conversion.
The Saints returned fire in the second term, putting the pressure on the Marians.
City conceded a penalty corner, providing an opportunity for Ben Revell to convert with accuracy and finesse.
As the third term ensued, tempers flared as both sides were restricted offensive entry and the midfield battle began to explode.
The visiting team extended the margin with two minutes remaining in the third quarter, up by one goal.
The final term exhibited strength and determination from both the Saints and Marians, however City managed to sneak past Smithton with a last goal to finalise the score, 3-1.
In the women’s match, Smithton were keen to show off their improvement against City following a seven goal defeat in the sides’ previous meeting.
Smithton launched into the competition, striking the opposition off balance as the forwardline combined to produce swift ball movement.
The Saints pushed the Marians deep into defence enabling Demi Littlejohn to pounce on a loose ball and slot it past the goalkeeper.
In the second term Smithton began with strength and stamina, motivated by the success of the first quarter.
However the Marians jumped into action to soon secure two goals.
Smithton settled into a solid structure, pushing forward with some skilful play on the right side of the field.
Abbey House worked the ball into attack and along the baseline to flick it past the keeper and square the scoreline at half time.
The opponents shared possession throughout the third quarter where Melissa Stokes and Jandi Smith combined well with Lily Nibbs, Sh’Kea Poke and Darcey Smith in defence and across the halfback line.
An unlucky deflection from a Smithton stick provide City with the scoreboard advantage late in the third quarter.
Play dodged from end to end throughout the final term in a scoreless quarter providing City Marians with the 3-2 victory.
In the next round of the Greater Northern League, Smithton and West Devonport will play in Smithton this Saturday (July 21).