// SCC going full-throttle to the finish line //
With just a few wins away from clinching the Cosmo, we knew that this game against an in-form Hotspurs wouldn’t be an easy affair. Over the years, no matter what place in the middle of the league table Spurs found themselves they have always turned up for the game against SCC. On a smaller-than-Dempsey sized pitch, this wasn’t a game we could afford to give anything less than our best effort.
The team was full of talent on the day with a full 16 on the team sheet. Coach Houlahan, despite unrivaled levels of preparation and organisation failed to make it on time (18min late to be exact), gave the boys his canned team talk and set us clear objectives for the match ahead. In a nutshell it was, “Lads, let’s build up a big enough lead so that I can give Owen a few minutes.”
The game started with a spirited Hotspurs side pressuring – putting in challenges and disrupting SCC’s attacking rhythm. Liam and Duric were close on numerous occasions in the first half, bruising their way through a tough back four. Matt “Only Respectable Guy I Know” Hulen was spritely ‘on offense’, delivering a half volleyed screamer that banged off the post and subsequently cleared out of danger. As the game wore on, SCC was finding the seams in a tiring Hotspurs defense. The possession game started to take hold once Hotspurs slowed down their pressure tactic and dropped their positioning deeper. Duric scored a quality goal to give SCC the lead 1-0 around the 35’ mark. Towards the end of the half, Hotspurs had a chance but was unable to convert. Should they have scored before the half to go 1-all it would have been a whole different ball game.
The 2nd half began much the same as the 1st half had ended. SCC was sitting in the catbird seat and you could feel the confidence in the midfield take over the game. Patience was the key to success as Anthony ‘Airplane’ Garreau got into his flow – dictating the pace and orchestrated an efficient build up into the opponent’s half. The 2nd goal came on a wonderstrike from Garreau from over 26m out… a laser than not even SCC’s own Ronnie “Beckham Between the Sticks” Smollett could have prevented from hitting the net. Soon after the 2-0 score line, Jack “Moves Like Ed Sheeran” Culinane went on another one of his marauding runs on the right flank. As he cut into the middle of the park, he fired a bullet from almost the exact same location as the previous strike. Goal!!!! 3-0.
Hotspurs had a few spirited attacks with some well-placed balls over the top. There were 2 occasions where they should have scored. Really solid effort and the momentum swing was noticeable at this stage in the game.
With a few minutes from time, Zatto received a lob pass from fellow substitute Andrew ‘Flock of Seagulls’ Hutcheon. As Zatto approached the ball for a first time volley he could feel the gravity of the situation… but mostly felt the gravity of the Centre-Back Aaron Jones’ massive noggin…. It looked to be going out of bounds for a throw-in until it passed Aaron’s head to only to alter it’s trajectory enough to redirect it into the side netting. He probably shouldn’t have celebrated like a little fairy but hey, he doesn’t score very often.
Fantastic performance all the way around, especially in defense. Clean sheet was well deserved. Only 2 wins needed for SCC to reclaim the title from the grubby hands of Rangers “Cosmoleague’s Leicester City” FC