It was a match pundits claimed could go either way, but the Far South Coast Football Association under 13 grand final proved a one-sided affair after Eden trounced Merimbula 3-0 in the season decider at Bega on Sunday.
The sides met four times during the regular season with a tally of two wins each, but it was Eden who went into the game with the psychological edge after finishing minor premiers by one point over Merimbula.
The scene was set for a torrid encounter, and if Eden were nervous it did not show.
Merimbula were immediately on the back foot after the kick-off when Eden’s Lincoln Stewart fired a shot past the keeper after only five minutes.
Eden’s attack was strong and their defence was equally impressive keeping Merimbula’s players at bay. Eden went into the half-time break up 1-0.
It is said defence wins games and all Eden needed to do was to keep Merimbula scoreless.
Not only did they stop Merimbula from scoring, but added two more goals of their own.
Fantastic teamwork and great crosses resulted in goals to Liam Broder and Tayla Grant-Danvers, sealing a memorable 3-0 victory for our local under 13s.
The win capped off a magnificent season for the Eden team, winning both the minor and major premierships. It was a fantastic result for the players, coaches, parents and the many spectators that attended the match.
The future looks bright for the side; one that will progress into next year’s under 14s competition as one of the favourites.
Eden Soccer Club president and under 13s coach Mick Sawers said the match was tougher than what the score indicated.
“The two teams met four times this season and there was only one goal separating them, so we expected the game to be pretty tough,” he said.
“The score line didn’t really portray how close the two teams were. We took the opportunities when they presented themselves, and defended well to protect our lead.
“We played Merimbula two weeks before the grand final in the final, and they dominated us across the park. They made us play their game, while on Sunday we played our own game.
“I’m happy with the team and they deserved their win.”
The Eden Soccer Club entered five teams in the 2012 junior competition, all of which performed well according to Sawers.
“The season panned out really well for the club,” he said.
“We only had junior teams this season but managed to get five sides on the paddock compared to three or four in the previous years, which is probably the best thing about this year.
“The under 13s did very well and they should go alright in the under 14s next year.
“The other teams also did very well. A lot of the kids only played their first year of soccer but they all loved it and will be back next year.
“All our players improved throughout the year and we’re looking forward to 2013 now.”