Byron Bay Rams
The pre-season Anzac Cup finalists Lismore Thistles were looking for a form reversal on Saturday after poor performances in three out of their last four games. The Byron Bay Rams were looking for another win to stay at the top of the competition ladder.
The Rams were without talented Jed Wright, however they showed the way from the start with Rams general Bruce Morhaus asserting his dominance in the midfield.
With only six minutes gone John Bradbury made a break on the left side and stunned the large crowd with his fantastic ball skills. He put a beautiful cross through to rookie Tim Knight hovering on the right. Knight slid around the Thistles defenders and scored the first of what was to be an avalanche of goals.
At the15-minute point Sam Owens flicked a pass through the Thistles midfield to Bradbury. He cut down the Thistles defenders and slotted a pass to Jordy Campbell for him to score.
After some slick passing, Bradbury slotted goal number three.
Just before half- time an uncharacteristic Rams desperate tackle resulted in a direct penalty and Thistles’ first goal.
The second half started with strong midfield tussles between Thistles’ Darren Beardow and Rams’ paceman Jonathan Pierce. Pierce showed great ball control and was able to aim his left-foot shot past the keeper to take the score to 4-1.
In another blistering attack Owens was brought down in the Thistles penalty box and Campbell stepped up to make no mistake, powering it into the bottom right-hand side of the net. Not long after in controversial circumstances, Tom Ruhl was given a red card after a tackle.
Revenge was swift after the Thistles keeper tripped Jordy Campbell near the goal and the resulting penalty kick and hat-trick to Campbell took the tally to 6-1.
With an overwhelming scoreline, complacency crept into the Rams back line and Thistles were able to score a scrappy goal.
In the closing moments John Bradbury crossed for Sam Owens to unleash a screaming left-footer past the hapless Thistles keeper to take the final score to 7-2.
The Rams went down 3-1 to Thistles after taking an early lead thanks to an Alex “Squirrel” Cruse goal. The loss ended a four-game winning streak.
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