St Joes won their third consecutive Broken Hill Soccer Association premiership on the weekend, clinching a comfortable 2-0 victory over Alma at O’Neill Memorial Park on Saturday.
Goal scorer Pat Nash said the early goals set the tone for the day.
“It probably couldn’t have been scripted any better for us to get out and get two early goals on the board. It really settled the boys and set the standard of the day, and just made everything a little bit easier from there,” Mr Nash told the Barrier Truth.
Matt Muscat, captain of St Joes, was elated to secure another premiership. He admitted feeling “absolutely buggered” following the contest, which unfolded in stifling heat. He reflected on the club’s journey post-match.
“When I started my senior career, I don’t think we had won a title for 25 years. We didn’t have a B Grade team, and we had only 10 registered players,” Captain Muscat said. “To come from that and build up, get a B Grade team, and increase our numbers to go on to win a few — this being my seventh out of ten — it’s just fantastic.”
“I have been a part of this club for 26 years and wouldn’t change a thing. It feels good to have climbed from the bottom to this great position,” Muscat continued.
Riley McInnes was named player of the match for his sensational performance on the wing for St Joes. His captain was keen to heap praise on him after the game.
“He has played like that all season. He’s fantastic; this has been his best season by far. Riley is a speedster, he plays hard and fair. Opposition players try to chase him down, and he’s got the legs to do it. He’s performed in every game this year; he’s simply a weapon,” said Muscat.
Alma, falling behind due to two early goals, mounted a late surge. They were dominant in the final 15 minutes but failed to convert that dominance into anything meaningful.
“They have a lot of young lads with fitness, and we were exhausted in that final 15 minutes. I just thought if we could pump it long and wind down the clock, we would have a good shot at holding onto the 2-0 lead. We knew they would come at us, and they did — it was good to hold on,” Mr Muscat said.
“Credit to all the boys; they stepped up where it counted,” he continued.
Pat Nash echoed those sentiments, saying, “Fortunately, we held strong and got over the line without conceding any goals.”
For Alma, it was a tale of what might have been. The Mighty Goats will have to wait another year before they can end their A Grade premiership drought.
St Joes 2 (Pat Nash, Ryan Miles)