Plains Rangers FC

6 & 7 April 2024
Rangers men 0, Waipuna Rangers 6
Whakatane Town 2, Rangers women 0

Plains Rangers women's football season opener on Sunday was a memorable occasion. Rangers played hosts Whakatane Town for the inaugural Brooke Stilgoe Cup, as well as competition points in the Women's Bay League. A large crowd was on hand to watch the game and to participate in the associated fund-raising activities that accompanied it. Whakatane Town has in the past usually been expected to win this fixture comfortably. At the outset it looked like this would come true, when their striker pounced on a loose ball in front of the Rangers goal to score after only two minutes. However, Rangers regathered themselves and, with stout defence and fine goalkeeping from Katie Mahy, kept the home team's attacks at bay for the rest of the half. Late in the half Rangers also managed to get several promising attacks together.
The second half saw Whakatane continuing to have the better share of possession, but with Rangers having a reasonable number of attacks of their own. Rangers came very close to getting an equaliser when Dee Haldane's shot beat the advancing keeper, but was cleared off the line by a defender. Late in the game Whakatane made the result safe, although it took some luck. A Rangers defender cleared the ball straight into an attacker's foot and it rebounded into the goal. The final score was Whakatane Town 2, Plains Rangers 0.
Outstanding goalkeeper Mahy was deservedly Rangers' player of the day. Others to shine were the central defensive pair Rose Sinkinson and Danielle Giordano and midfielders Haldane and Ella-Rose Bain.
Next Sunday Rangers women are at home to Waiariki.
On Saturday Plains Rangers men opened their season in less memorable style. They were at home to newly promoted Waipuna Rangers in the first of five grading rounds. Waipuna shot out to an early lead, catching the home team out with their quick, slick movement and pressing style. When, after fifteen minutes a brilliantly struck third goal sailed into their net, the writing was on the wall for the home team. Plains Rangers did gather themselves together and competed quite well until just before the break when again the visitors scored via a fast break and then almost immediately again. At half time their lead was 5 – 0.
Rangers did sort out some issues at half time and held their opposition to only one further goal in the second half, to make the final score Plains Rangers 0, Waipuna Rangers 6.
Shane Baillie was named player of the day for his strong work on defence, while young goalkeeper Kobi Wetting was also singled out for making a number of fine saves as the game went on. Rangers men will have plenty to think about for their game away at Ngongotaha-Lakes this coming Saturday.

Back to News