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Lyons saves Freo against NTC

Report by Edward Nixon

Mikayla Lyons’ goal nine minutes from time rescued a 1-1 draw for Fremantle City against NTC Women in their Women’s Premier League Round 14 clash at Celebration Park on Sunday.

Liana Cook’s first-half strike looked enough for NTC to claim the points before Lyons popped up to give the visiting Fremantle a share of the spoils.

“I think we deserved a point,” Fremantle coach Thomas Richard said.

“We came with a new formation today so was a bit of an experiment and the girls did very well with it.”

Both sides came into this fixture on the back of losses from last week but each started brightly as the game became a midfield battle.

It took 10 minutes for the first shot of the contest – Fremantle’s Courtney Owen forcing NTC goalkeeper Morgan Aquino into action.

Aquino was called upon again just eight minutes later as Lyons fed Corrine Penton, whose shot was blocked on the way through.

Having soaked up some early pressure, NTC struck with their first real opportunity of the game. Leticia McKenna’s driving run set up Cook, whose first-time shot rifled into the back of the net.

Owen almost hit back immediately for City but her shot was well saved by a diving Aquino before the NTC shot-stopper was on hand again to tip Chelsea Johnstone’s effort over the bar.

Cook almost doubled NTC’s advantage just before the break but her snap shot was comfortably kept out by Kaylin Geelhoed.

Fremantle came out in the second half with a point to prove and would have been level just six minutes after the restart but for Aquino’s superb work to deny Lyons.

NTC went close to killing off the game with just quarter-of-an-hour to play as skipper Abbey Meakins’ long-range effort cannoned off the woodwork.

The hosts would live to rue that miss, as City pulled themselves level just nine minutes from time as Lyons popped up at the back post to tap Aija Bent-Trinder’s set-piece home.

NTC had one final opportunity to grab a late winner but Meakins’ free-kick clipped the top of the bar and went over.

“We hit the post twice, probably created the better chances on the day, but I’m really pleased with how they played today,” NTC coach Jessine Bonzas said.

NTC Women 1 (Cook 27min)
Fremantle City 1 (Lyons 81)
Celebration Park
Sunday, July 29
Kick off: 10.30am
Referee: Paul Mills

NTC Women: 1. Morgan AQUINO, 4. Ashleigh SANTICH, 5. Rosie LEHANE (24. Elizabeth WUST 66), 6. Georgie IRELAND (9. Annabelle LEEK 53), 7. Liana COOK, 8. Abbey MEAKINS, 12. Leticia MCKENNA, 15. Zoee SPADANO, 16. Isabella WALLHEAD (3. Cheyenne WISE-JARVIS 58), 21. Georgia CAWLEY
Substitutes not used: 19. Emma MCMURDO, 22. Tanesha BAKER
Yellow cards: Nil
Red cards: Nil

Fremantle City: 1. Kaylin GEELHOED, 3. Issy BRIDGER, 6. Laura WALTMAN, 8. Mikayla LYONS, 9. Evie MARCHETTI, 10. Courtney OWEN, 17. Chelsea JOHNSTONE, 40. Aija BENT-TRINDER, 42. Steffi NADILO, 44. Corrine PENTON (26. Sarah KENNY 53), 49. Emma GAUTREY
Substitutes not used: 7. Steph SIMMONDS, 27. Nyana JAYME, 34. Peggy WOTHERSPOON, 45. Ester WATTS
Yellow cards: (Owen 67)
Red cards: Nil