Match Report: Double Penalty Save Secures Draw For Second Team

The football second team battled to secure a hard-fought point as they drew 1-1 with University of Lancaster.

Nathan Onraet-Wells gave the away side the lead just after the half time interval but Callum Williams’ curling 25-yard effort levelled the scores in a fiery encounter a the UCLan Sports Arena.

Lancaster missed two first half penalties with the first bringing a brilliant save from UCLan goalkeeper Ruairi McDaid and the second hitting the post.

The draw saw UCLan become the first team to take points off Lancaster in the Northern Division 4A as the home side built on their recent 2-0 victory over the University of Cumbria.

Lancaster went into the game with a 100% record in the league and began in confident fashion with Robbie Kennedy heading wide from close range within the first five minutes.

The away side continued to pressure the UCLan backline before they eventually won a penalty when Lancaster’s no.14 was brought down in the area and the referee pointed to the spot.

Lancaster’s Onraet-Wells stepped up to take the penalty but McDaid dived low to his left to get a strong hand on the effort and turn it around the post.

The away side continued to apply huge pressure on the UCLan goal and McDaid produced two more excellent saves within the space of two minutes just before the half hour mark.

First, a deflected effort from Daniel Rommu saw the UCLan shotstopper dive to his left to tip the shot wide of the post. Then from the resulting corner, a goalmouth scramble ensued before a shot was fired in from two yards out but McDaid made a great reaction stop to keep the scores level.

UCLan had a strong penalty claim turned down by the referee as the half came to a close and they were sucker-punched as Lancaster counter-attacked and won a penalty for themselves.

This time winger, Kennedy, stepped up to take the penalty but he saw his powerful shot cannon back off the left-hand post so the game remained goalless.

UCLan started the second half much better but it was the league leaders who took the lead as Onraet-Wells made up for his penalty miss by arriving unmarked at the back post to head home a cross from the left side.

The home side didn’t let their heads drop and began to enjoy more possession and make inroads into Lancaster defence.

Eventually, their efforts were rewarded as Callum Williams cut in from the right side and curled a superb effort into the bottom corner of the net beyond the reach of keeper George Stopczyski to put UCLan back on level terms.

The goal inspired UCLan and they continued to press for a winner as John Main, who came on as a substitute, saw his freekick smack against the post with the goalkeeper stranded.

Both teams looked to find a winner in the last 10 minutes with Lancaster’s captain Sam Armstrong firing inches wide of the post whilst George Kelly saw his effort fly wide for UCLan but it remained 1-1 and both sides walked away with a point.

UCLan 2nd Team manager, Mark Richardson, said: “It was a tough game. In the first half we let them play how they wanted to play. In the second half we put a bit more determination, a bit more grit into it.  The 50/50’s we won and we had most of the chances towards the end. On another day, we probably could have won.”

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