Plains Rangers AFC
23 April 2016
Tauranga City Utd 0, Plains Rangers men 1
On Saturday SLH Contracting Plains Rangers were able to give striker Jaiden Ibbetson a suitable send off in his last game.
Rangers travelled to play Tauranga City in BOP division two and had to survive a sustained amount of pressure from the home team until they gained the upper hand. The two evenly matched teams had a hard fought battle, but the home team used their possession well from the beginning. In the 11th minute they had the ball in the net but it was ruled out for offside. Ten minutes later they were awarded disputed penalty, but blasted the attempt over the bar. From the half hour mark the chances began to even up. A good Ibbetson cross almost connected with Jordan Ogilvy at the far post. Tauranga City hit the Rangers' crossbar. Sustained possession from Rangers pinned the home team back, but the game was still 0 – 0 at half time.
Rangers gained ascendancy for quite a while after the break. Ogilvy went close with a header from a James Krause cross. After ten minutes a melee in front of the Tauranga goal saw Krause have a decent penalty shout turned down, then Petir Gray have a good shot blocked. Midway through the half Rangers broke the drought. Ibbetson sent over a nice corner and Ogilvy scored with an excellent header. Ten minutes later Chris Butler connected well with another Ibbetson corner, but his header was well saved by the home team keeper.
The final fifteen minutes saw Tauranga City desperately trying to grab an equaliser, but Rangers defence, backed up by keeper Christian Wetting kept them out. A Rangers break out almost doubled the lead when substitute striker Andy Willis put overlapping left fullback Josh Cozens in on goal, but his shot crashed into the side-netting. The final score was Tauranga City 0, Plains Rangers 1.
Player-coach Wetting was pleased with his team's effort, but singled out the overseas-bound Ibbetson's attitude for the player of the day award, referring to the striker chasing back to defend when needed in the final minutes.
This Saturday Rangers men are away to Opotiki, while Rangers women come back from their weekend off with a local derby at Kawerau Town on Sunday.