Bellingen High School open girls football team are North Coast champions after defeating the Rivers College 3-2 in a hard fought game. The victory was made sweeter by the fact that the Rivers College is made up of three high schools, Kadina HS, Richmond River HS and Lismore HS joined together.
The game was a torrid affair with both teams boasting a strong lineup. After attacking the goal numerous times the Bellingen girls converted through Ashley Sticker who made no mistake in finishing a cross from Willow Neal. The Bellingen girls maintained good possession in the mid field and were dominating play when against the run of play a quick change of possession and fast release of the ball saw The Rivers equalise. The girls kicked off at the restart and great passing between Willow Neal and Jordan Healy saw Jordan score within 10 seconds of the restart. The half time score was 2-1.
The Rivers team started the second half with determination and a few mistakes crept into the Bellingen game. The Rivers equalised 2-2 but from then on Bellingen took control scoring the best goal of the match when Jordan Healy crossed a great ball and Kelsey Williamson-Leslie finished perfectly at far post 3-2. The Rivers were never given another chance with strong defending by the entire back line especially Hannah Watt and Emily Ruming. Player of the match was undoubtedly Willow Neal whose tireless work in the mid-field helped maintain possession and set up many opportunities.
The next game will be against the champion team from Sydney West, which is yet to be decided, however, it will be played at Connell Park before the end of term. Hopefully many supporters will be at this game to cheer these talented girls on.