Classics v Peninsular Transit
James Hill
18th. Mar. 2018

Conditions: Cloudy and reasonable - Willie Dixon said, "It's bloody cold" so the weather forecast was redesignated as, 'If you are a Southerner don't go out, if you are a Northerner you'll need your big coat.'

Players on duty: Jason Clegg, Jeff Dickson, Randy Hosler, Dave Moore, Pat Rohla, Alan Massender, Larry Thorlakson, Gordie Macklin, Gene Crowley, Daryl Lawrie, Jody Nelson, Chris Arcari, Lorenzo Arcari, Brian Griffiths, Pat O'Krane, Willie Dixon.
Coaches on duty: Dave Moore & Jim Eden.

Jinx strikes again........
This was the third meeting of the season for these teams with Transit coming out best in the other two games. It was time for revenge! The action began from the off and an early clearance from defence put Gordie Macklin away but his centre couldn't quite reach Daryl Lawrie. Alan Massender bought an early ticket with a shot in the fourth minute which was deflected for a corner. Transit took the lead in the fifth minute after Chris Arcari misjudged a through ball which went to a Transit attacker who struck the ball hard and low to the left of Jason Clegg to put them ahead. Two minutes later Pat Rohla send over a lovely cross which caused havoc in the visitor's defence but it was eventually scrambled wide. In the 8th, Macklin was making his way down the left which brought a free kick after a spectacular dive. Rohla took the kick which went high into the box and after some juggling Lorenzo Arcari was on hand to put the ball away for his second goal in two games.

In the 11th, Lawrie had a run which resulted in Macklin just missing the top right angle of the goal posts. The match was living up to expectations with the play fluctuating from end to end and Transit almost took the lead again in the 13th with an excellent effort that was equalled by Clegg who push the ball wide for a corner. On the half hour mark another left wing break through by Transit brought another excellent save from Clegg who dived to his right to divert the ball for another corner. Just five minutes later Clegg was called into action to answer more telling questions from the Transit forwards - this time it brought a double save which emphasised his alertness and agility. He had seen more action up to this point than he had in the majority of the season's previous games. Pat O'Krane tried his luck from range in the 41st but his shot just didn't have the altitude required to beat the keeper. Seconds later he was at it again but this time O'Krane caught it just right to power the ball home, again from range, to put the Classics ahead for the first time.

With two minutes to go to the whistle it is appropriate to regurgitate some old words of wisdom, "A team is more vulnerable when they have just scored." This was particularly chilling as Transit ran down the field to hit an equalise before the half time whistle. It was scored from close range by the Transit 'Speedy Gonzalez' lookalike, their number 24, although it is unsure if the 24 shirt represents the players position or his age! At this stage we will take a half time break to recognise one of our former players who had come out to watch - Collin Ashton. Collin was Dave Moore's coach when they were both playing over 30's football back in 1987/88. He made a total of 173 appearances with 30 goals but his last game was playing in goals on 2nd February 2003 in a 3-2 win over Alemania - Jim Eden got two goals and Bill Macauley got the other. The match write-up makes interesting reading so if you have a minute click here.

Macklin was putting in the effort throughout the game and he had two good scoring chances in the first five minutes of the second half. Once again, the comic moment of the game falls to Larry Thorlakson. This time he was running down the field with the ball glued to his head. It was bouncing slightly but had he not been white your could have sworn that it was a perforning sea lion! There was sin-bin time for both Randy Hosler and O'Krane - Pat this is becoming a bad habit! Transit stole the game with ten minutes remaining when a left wing centre eluded Clegg and Moore couldn't get across fast enough to clear the danger as the visiting forward sent a powerful header into the unguarded net. It was a cruel blow which kept the Transit jinx going. The Classics push for the equaliser and Jeff Dickson had an effort well saved. With minutes remaining Rohla bought a free kick in a dangerous position after he dived to win it - Brian Phelps would have been proud of it. With Macklin, Rohla and Thorlakson all contributing I think the game contained more dives than Captain Nemo has ever done. On the refelection of play a draw would have been a fair result but it was always going to be decided with the fifth goal and unfortunately, on this occasion, it was grabbed by Transit. There was a coming together of managers after all the players had departed and Ian Morrison and the Classics manager, in their after game press conference, agreed that the drinking battle was declared a draw as neither of them wanted to do an Alan Massender and stay until dark! Incidentally, Massender had an excellent game.

Final Score: Classics 2 Peninsular Transit 3 (2-2)

Yellow Card: Randy Hosler & Pat O'Krane
Crap Award: Jody Nelson