Late strike breaches the fort .....
It was a return to action for the Classics after a long Christmas lay-off, extended by field closures which meant that the last fixture was played in November 2015. The home side struck as early as the first minute but the 'goal' was ruled out by Peter 'Clatternberg' Thomas who ruled that it was off-side. Gordie Macklin was pumped up and declared that his presence was there, even though the Seattle Seahawks (some minor American football team I think) were playing. The seventh minute brought a comical break-through. The visiting keeper and his full back were at sixes and sevens with each other as a loose ball went through to them. They stood there looking at each other while the alert Macklin stole in between them, like a pick-pocket, and cheekily planted the ball into the back of the net. As he retreated to the centre circle, words of wisdom emenated from his oracle and he was heard to comment, "Those two players have been cooped up with their wives for the last two months and they can't make a decision." Spontaneous laughter became the in thing to do. In the 19th. minute it was Macklin again who sent over a cross-cum-centre which was within a hairs thickness of entering the net but the ball rolled across the cross-bar and bounced back into play.
United were level in the 22nd. minute after a deja vu moment which witnessed the Classics defence following word-for-word the script of the first goal. With Chris Arcari and his full back waiting for the off side whistle, a visiting forward sneaked in to plant the ball home past Judd Boxtart - what do we tell the kids? - never stop until you hear the whistle! The Classics couldn't get their game together and too many passes went astray which made it hard going. There were welcome returns to the action for Larry Thorlakson and Alfie Deglan who acquitted themselves well but the score remained at 1-1 at the interval.
The second half saw a more accomplished performance from the Classics as they tried to get into their stride although the goal attemps were few and far between. Boxtart was called upon to make a match winning save with 10 minutes remaining, which he executed with some ease. With just a couple of minutes remaining Macklin centred for Jimmy Butler who headed over the bar. The last minute came and the Classics forced a left wing corner. This was to be the final move of the game. The ball was headed goalwards by Sherman Foster and his effort was headed off the line to a waiting Pat Rohla who was lurking on the back post. With literally 30 seconds remaining, Rohla rifled an unstoppable volley into the roof of the net, from an acute angle, to give the Classics the victory which they probably overall deserved, considering the amount of possession they had during the second half. It was a cruel blow to suffer for the visitors who had contributed so much to an entertaining game. Rohla was later awarded the Snickers award for the day for 'not being yourself' as he actually had a good shot and scored a goal. It was described as the best goal of the year but, on reflection, there have only been two goals scored this year!
MWG: P. Rohla