A handful of seconds – that’s what stood between Western NSW Mariners FC and an upset victory over National Premier Leagues 3 rivals Hawkesbury City on Saturday afternoon.
The Mariners led 2-1 over Hawkesbury as the game headed inside the final minute at Bathurst’s Proctor Park, but the visitors snatched a late equaliser from a free kick.
To come so close to toppling a side sitting eight places above his is a positive but Mariners skipper, Orange’s Adam Scimone, said being forced to share the points is still disappointing.
”We had them, but they got us at the end from a set piece,” he said.
“We know that’s pretty much their strength .. but overall it was a better performance from us, to go from getting shellacked to competing with a top five side.
“We scored early on and honestly we were really dominant. It was one of the times where I really thought that we were one of the better sides.
“Once we scored I think they respected us a lot more … but we really gave them a good crack in that first half.”
It was Scimone who opened scoring in the eighth minute before the visitors equalised two out from the break via James Mawein’s long-range effort.
The Mariners took the lead in the 70th minutes as Dellerba slotted home a Jaiden Culbert cross, but Santiago Pallares Palomeque salvaged a draw for Hawkesbury with his late effort.
“Their first goal was a cracker from some 30-odd yards out … that was right at the death of the first half,” Scimone said.