Plains Rangers AFC

12 August 2017
Plains Rangers men 2, Papamoa 1
Taupo v Plains Rangers women

From the excellent pitch at Taupo last week, Plains Rangers and their visitors Papamoa had to adjust to a fairly awful playing surface at Awakeri this week. However, the bumpy, muddy ground covered with long grass didn't prevent both teams from playing some good football at times.
Rangers started out the stronger and after five minutes right wing Sam Christieson had the hard luck to see his header bounce away off the post. The home team did hit the front soon after though, when a Sione Lotu shot bounced off a defender and into his own goal. Midway through the half Papamoa hit back with a quick break. A Rangers clearance hit their own crossbar (!) and a Papamoa striker slammed home the rebound. Rangers replied immediately. A good pass from James Hart found Hamish Wilde, who beat two players before finishing with an accurate shot. On the half hour Rangers player-coach Christian Wetting pulled off a brilliant diving save to deny ex-Rangers player Paddy Lambert and keep his team's lead. Rangers pushed hard to extend their lead, with both Hart and Husnul Gray having shots well saved before the break.
At half time Wetting exhorted his troops to keep the passing short to try and take the awkward bounce of the pitch out of the game.
Rangers had the better share of possession in the second half, but they couldn't make the game safe with a third goal. Three times the Papamoa keeper made excellent saves to thwart one-on-one chances. The final score remained SLH Contracting Plains Rangers 2, Papamoa 1.
James Hart was named Rangers' player of the day and Paddy Lambert was Papamoa's. Carl Imlig and Christian Wetting were also in top form for the home team. This Saturday Rangers men are away to Otumoetai.
Rangers women travelled to play Taupo in their Bay Bowl game. It was cold and windy and the home team started strongly. Taupo got out to an early lead, scoring three goals. Rangers then held them out for quite a while before a couple of late goals. After some encouraging words at half time, Rangers played a lot better in the second half and had quite a few shots on goal. In the end the score was Taupo 11, Rangers 0.
Ranee Whiting was player of the day after a strong showing in defence. Others to impress were Samantha Burr in the midfield and Mishka Barry and Gemma Stuckey up front.
This Sunday Rangers women have a bye.