HANWOOD Football Club has been bundled out of the Regional Premier League finals after being thumped by Cobram Victory 6-1 at McEwen Reserve on Saturday night.
Despite not having beaten Victory to date, Hanwood FC entered the clash confident of an upset and after trailing 2-1 at the break, looked a chance of extending its season by another week.
However, a slew of free kicks and decisions against Hanwood FC, which included three players being sent off, saw the score blow out to allow Victory to move through to the next round.
Hanwood FC coach Anthony Agresta expressed his frustration at the outcome of the game, saying he thought his side could finish well and win before the calls went against the visitors.
“We were only down 2-1 at half-time and we had plenty of chances in the first half,” Agresta said.
“We had Jason (Bertacco) and Joe (Catanzariti) up the front and they had them (Victory) in sixes and sevens at times.”
“But something happened at half-time and in the second half, it was free kick after free kick against us and we didn’t stand a chance – in the first half things were being called both ways, but then it changed.
“I don’t mind losing fair and square, but I was more disappointed for the people who made the effort to travel down and support the game.”
Things started to turn sour for Hanwood FC when it was 3-1 down and Victory made the most of a non-call by a linesman after the ball appeared to travel out of bounds by up to half-a-metre.
Cobram capitalised as the Hanwood players stopped, expecting a throw-in, with Catanzariti soon sent off for questioning the decision.
The visitors were down to nine men when Jonathan Favero was given an early mark after allegedly bringing down a Victory player before a free kick, resulting in another red card and a penalty as the score blew out late.
Earlier in the game, Victory jumped out to a handy 2-0 lead before Jason Bertacco capitalised on a good flick-on pass from Catanzariti, to beat the Victory ‘keeper with a low shot to his left.
Despite being knocked out in the first round of the finals Agresta said the club’s first year in the RPL was a positive one, especially for its raft of talented young players.
“I think it was good for the younger fellas in our side to have played at this standard,” he said.
“Guys like myself, Michael Musitano, Joey Schirripa and Jason (Bertacco) – we’ve been exposed to that standard before, but for guys like Anthony Agresta, Daniel and Andrew Quarisa and even Daniel Andreazza, it’s a good thing for them to learn from the season.
“And I honestly believe they’ve all gone up a level in their performance, which is good to see.”