Yenda Tigers slam home seven in Wagga shootout

GOALS GALORE: Yenda's Dean Kelly drives the Tigers forward during Saturday's sensational 7-5 win in Wagga. Picture: The Daily Advertiser

GOALS GALORE: Yenda's Dean Kelly drives the Tigers forward during Saturday's sensational 7-5 win in Wagga. Picture: The Daily Advertiser

Football

THE Yenda Tigers have become the first visiting side to win in Wagga this year, overcoming the Eastern Wanderers in an incredible goalfest at Gissing Oval on Saturday.

Twelve goals were scored in total and the lead changed hands multiple times, but the resurgent Tigers finished the strongest to prevail 7-5.

The win lifts Yenda into fifth spot, just one point adrift of fourth-placed Leeton United, who will face champions Yoogali SC on Wednesday night.

In a stunning contest, the Tigers scored first and held a 3-2 advantage at the break, only for the Wanderers to come out firing early in the second half and hit the front.

But Yenda refused to lie down and rallied to seal a stunning victory late on.

"It was just an attack-a-thon basically," Eastern Wanderers coach Andrew Douglas said.

"All the goals were pretty much screamers - as a spectacle, it was incredible.

"They were unlucky to have not scored a couple more, probably, and so were we.

"I haven't seen a game like that for quite some time."

The Tigers will head into this weekend's bye with their tails up, having secured three vital points from the Billabong Cup's toughest road trip.

Yenda's next match is at home against Leeton on June 29 - a golden opportunity for the side to jump into the top four.

Meanwhile, the result sees the Wanderers slip down to sixth spot on the ladder, with Douglas understandably unhappy with how his side performed at the defensive end.

He said he was "extremely disappointed" with the way the Wagga side allowed Yenda to repeatedly come back into the match.

"From our point-of-view, the lack of urgency in our defensive third was a big worry," he said.

"Don't get me wrong, they've got some bloody good players, but we didn't defend in numbers and that left us isolated quite a bit.

"There was no real reason for it - even when we did have numbers back, it was a lack of intensity to get to the man with the ball."

However, Douglas does not believe the Wagga club's first loss at home will be fatal to their finals chances.

Five of the Eastern Wanderers' last eight games are at Gissing Oval and Douglas still thinks his side can make up the gap between themselves and the top four if they are good enough.

"It wasn't the best way to get back into it after the (long weekend) break, especially considering we've got a strong run of home games coming up to the end of the year," he said.

"We did talk about that before the game and that's probably more the reason why I was disappointed - it was the manner we addressed the game.

"It ended up being a shootout between the attacking halves.

"Defence went out the window, our communication was down.

"We're a lot better than that."

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