The Trafalgar Victory FC senior women traveled to Burrage Reserve, Newborough to take part in the 2019 KonQa Shield. Having placed 2nd in the same event last year, the Trafalgar team were expected to perform well in this year’s carnival. Most teams were keeping a close eye on the top trio from last year of Traralgon City, Fortuna and Trafalgar. However, with off season player movement and many new faces across all teams, there was an element of uncertainty at the commencement of the day’s play for all teams.
Trafalgar drew pool A and played two pool matches in the round robin stage of the event. The pool matches were played against Newborough-Yallourn and Monash respectively.
Pool A – Match 1: TVFC V Newborough-Yallourn (0-0)
Trafalgar had the majority of possession in their first pool match against a relatively young and inexperienced Newborough-Yallourn team. With dominance across the park it was somewhat disappointing not to convert such control of the game onto the scoreboard. By the end of the match the scoreline was 0-0 draw. New players Tanya Makins and Tanya Wallace both played really well and look to be handy additions to the TVFC lineup. Defenders Caycee Tatterson and Emily Keilty covered the ground with ease and are both in great shape for the start of the season proper. The traditional TVFC competitors such as Amanda Hines, Tumi Yusuf and Molly Ewen were switched on the moment they crossed the white line.
Pool A – Match 2: TVFC V Monash (1-0)
The second pool match against another very young team in Monash, followed a similar script. Trafalgar had considerable possession and numerous shots on goal. However, Monash keeper sally Kerstine made several top notch reflex saves to deny Trafalgar any first half goals. The match looked to heading in a similar direction to that played against Newborough Yallourn and the girls were genuinely looking at an early departure for the carnival, having not won any matches. However, cometh the hour, cometh the woman. TVFC super star and reigning LVSL Player’s Player, Amanda Hines drove a lovely shot firmly into the back of the net to win the match for Trafalgar and qualify the team for the knockout final stage of the tournament. It was a just outcome for the girls who truly deserved the opportunity to progress to the final stage of the carnival.
With the temperature rising and last year’s champions, Fortuna, pulling out of the tournament due to extreme heat, the organisers decided not to play semi finals. Rather the top two teams from both pools would play off in the 2019 KonQa Shield grand final. The match was to be played between Trafalgar Victory FC and Traralgon City SC.
Grand Final Match: TVFC V Traralgon City
With rising temperatures and no subs available for the entire carnival, the TVFC ladies took to the pitch against the much fancied Traralgon City team. Many of the Trafalgar girls could have been forgiven for switching off for the final game of the day. However, Coach Tony would have none of this. Tony got the girls focused on the match and instilled a genuine sense of belief. The team that had pretty much coasted through the pool matches really took it to the fancied opposition and were playing great ball to feet. The Trafalgar girls had Traralgon City on the ropes and were applying amazing pressure and playing out of their skin. The ball movement across all three lines was first class and it didn’t take long for the Trafalgar girls to set up Tumi with a one on one with the City keeper. Tumi accepted the opportunity and put Trafalgar ahead 1-0, with her mother watching on.
Good teams respond to challenges and it literally took Traralgon City 30 seconds from the resulting kickoff to tie up the match 1-1. The City shot on goal was deflected by TVFC keeper Caitlyn Mathews who made a last minute spoil on the shot. However, the ball rather fortuitously bounced off the inside of the upright post to roll over the goal line.
The match then proceeded to go up a notch and it was indeed “game on”. Both teams were treating the game as much more than a preseason friendly and the football was intense to say the least. Trafalgar and City both made numerous attacks on goal. However, when the half time whistle blew the match was evenly situated with the score being 1-1.
The second half of the match started as the first half had finished, with both teams generating numerous shots on goal. Both teams were desperate to win the ball and pushing the game to the extremes. With the match looking to go into extra time it was a diving challenge from the TVFC defense which resulted in a penalty being awarded to Traralgon City in the final minutes of the grand final. The goal was well converted by the Traralgon striker and Traralgon City team went on to record a 2-1 victory to win the 2019 KonQa Shield. The Trafalgar girls stayed for the presentation of the KonQa shield to the Traralgon City team. Whilst there was respect for the carnival winners, there was also a determined look upon the face of each and every Trafalgar player. Game on for season 2019.
Coach Tony was extremely happy with the team’s performance. With no subs, several new players, exhausting conditions and a formidable opposition, the ladies stood strong and fought the match right to the end. It was indeed a great sign for the senior ladies, who now look forward to the season proper with considerable confidence.
Trafalgar Victory FC would like to thank Newborough-Yallourn for hosting the 2019 KonQa Shield. It was a great start to the season, bringing several teams together for a great day’s football.