As the rain continued to pour over Cromer Park it was Pittwater that raised the Challenge Cup trophy at the end of the night after a 3-1 victory over Forest Killarney.
The game started with intensity and speed however it wasn’t long before Pittwater found the back of the net to take an early lead.
The 9th minute of the game saw Pittwater with a chance. just missing as the ball skimmed past the post.
Continuing their attack, it was Michael McGinley that added his name to the scoreboard first in the 16th minute of the game after a deflection directed his shot into the net.
With Forest utilising their speed and youth they continued to play hard and fast whilst Pittwater’s experience on was display.
As the first half continued and the rain only got heavier both teams were looking to add to the scoreboard.
A shot on goal from Forest in the 35th minute had the crowd cheering. A quick attack down the line form Forest Killarney’s Luke Zaloumis came soon after however was quickly shut down by Pittwater’s defence.
Turning it around Pittwater continued to play their game, stringing passes together to find themselves at the other end of the pitch.
A scramble in the goal nearly saw Pittwater further the lead however was cleared off the line. Only five minutes later though Odin Seoane Racano curled a shot into the far post to give Pittwater a 2-0 lead just before half time.
As the whistle blew to start the second half it was Pittwater who came out firing.
Only five minutes had passed when Pittwater’s Nelson Pyl picked up a through ball and took on Forest Killarney’s goalkeeper, Lyle Docker, one on one, securing Pittwater’s third and final goal.
Although this would be the champions final goal it did not mean the momentum stopped.
The calls for a penalty echoed over Cromer Park as Pyl went down in the box. A cross from Soeana Racano into Max Bogunovic saw another shot go wide.
With the weather only getting worse the experience of Pittwater began to show, however Forest Killarney did not give up.
The 75th minute saw a long range shot from Forest Killarney’s Luke Sheepway find the back of the net and brought Forest back into the game.
Now 3-1 with 15 minutes to go Forest dug deep. Attacking immediately after their conversion Pittwater’s keeper, Josh Dijkstra, managed to keep them to one goal with a diving save.
As the final whistle neared, Forest Killarney had one final attempt however the defence and discipline of Pittwater would see the match finish 3-1.
A proud coach, Adam Israel could not be happier with the outcome of the evening.
“It was a good game of football, and I am really happy with my boys, they worked so bloody hard” Israel said.
“We have played Forest a lot and they should hold their heads high. We knew it would be a tough slog into the wind but then in the second half we played some of the best football we have played in a long time.
“I’m just delighted we got the trophy this evening.”
Although it was not the underdog story Forest Killarney had dreamt of coach Paul O’Shaughnessy was still in high spirits.
“We just wanted to play football and hopefully we demonstrated that tonight” O’Shaughnessy said.
“I’m just super proud, they played good football in the first 20 minutes, then it got a bit shaky, but we didn’t give up the fight.”
“You have to take your hat off to Pittwater, they are a more experienced side, but we are young, and we still have a lot of development to go and hopefully we can continue to get into more finals and win them.”