Byron Rams are finals bound
THE Apex Byron Bay Reserves confirmed a comfortable second place season finish with a convincing 5-1 win over their Villa rivals in Saturday's final round of the Football Far North Coast Competition.
Villa were untouchable in third spot and both teams are through the finals series.
The Rams Premier Division squad also went into the final round secure in second place but for the Alstonville boys' finals hopes, it was do-or-die.
The result was a taut and hard fought affair, with most of the intensity coming from the Villa end.
Alstonville pressed hard for much of the early play before a clever through ball put Rams Striker Jono Pierce on the run to a one-on-one with the Villa Keeper.
Pierce calmly slotted home to put the Rams on the board. Seven minutes into the second half and a spirited counter attack saw Alstonville equalise and with pride on the line, Byron stepped up the attack.
Defender James Tomlinson came off the bench and onto the Byron wing 15 minutes in and immediately made his presence felt.
Some smooth combination work, a quick cross from Tomlinson and a cool finish from Pierce put the Rams back in front midway through the second half.
Alstonville again turned up the heat in the closing minutes but the Rams defence held.
A penalty to Alstonville in the final seconds of a very long injury time finally gave them the equaliser at 2-2 but left them an agonising point short of a finals berth.
Check the FFNC website for details of the finals series: http://footballf arnorthcoast.com.au.