Soccer: Bangalow are the real deal

BANGALOW'S new-look line-up has proven it is a genuine semi- final contender with a well-constructed 3-1 away win over Lismore Thistles in Far North Coast premier league soccer.

Three top-shelf goals from Byron Milne, Joel Rudgley and Josh Cole were too much for the Blues, who lacked bite up front and squander- ed numerous chances.

Their only goal came from defender Max Hospers as they struggled to cope with the absence of key players Darren Beardow, Jeremy Sullivan and Paul Mackney.

The Blues have now lost their first two games in a sluggish start to the season and face the daunt- ing prospect of an away clash with the in-form Byron Bay next week.

Byron Bay's Jonathan Pierce made the most of his late selection as striker in the Rams' away clash with Lenox Head, scoring five goals in a 6-0 win.

The late withdrawal of James Tomlinson prompted coach Damon Bell to give Pierce a chance up front, and he repaid the faith of his coach handsomely.

Usually a wide defender or midfielder, Pierce had never scored more than three goals in a whole season, but has now put the pressure on Bell to leave him up front.

Tyson Kaye scored Byron Bay's sixth goal as they crushed the Sharks' hopes of an upset.

Lismore Workers secured their first points of the season with a torrid 3-2 home win over Alston- ville.

Villa were missing three key players but still opened the scoring through Jack Scarlett.

Matt Keevers equalised for Workers before the break.

The Redmen went on with the job with goals from Jonty Miller and Paddy Kable, before Jacob Arthur clawed one back for Villa.

Passions spilled over late in the game when a skirmish between Workers' Sam Sharkey and Villa captain Joel Perkins resulted in both being sent off.

Villa also lost Kurt Numan to a red card in the dying minutes.

Richmond Rovers had to come from behind before returning from Casino with a hard-fought 4-1 win.

An early goal from Josh Rankin gave the fired-up Cobras some hope of an upset, but the defending major premiers had too much class and sealed the win with goals from Jonathan See, Jacob Heffernan, Russell Dent and Brad Bugden.

Goonellabah were also forced to work hard for a tight 2-1 away win over a gritty Italo Stars.

Goals from Matt Armstrong and Kaiden Powell gave the Hornets the edge, with Nick Harris scoring for the improving Stars.



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