THE Strikers golden run continues after a 3-0 win over Kew in the major semi-final yesterday put them straight into the decider in two weeks.
A goal in the opening minutes from a short corner was rammed home by Nan Latta while Tatiana Rouch got on the end of some outstanding lead-up play to finish the second and send the Hockey Albury Wodonga state league 1 women to the break 2-0 up.
In the second half, Latta again found the net despite having two, and at times three, defenders trying to halt her progress.
Coach Tony Jones said it was a dominant display from his ever-improving team.
In the two, home and away clashes the sides played out 2-2 draws.
“It made a big difference scoring early and to be fair we probably weren’t at our best at the start of the game,” he said.
“But after that we built pressure and started to control the play, Tatiana Rouch’s goal was a great finish to a good passage of play.
“Nan scored again despite the attention of several defenders — it was obviously their plan to double and triple team her but she was just too clever, too strong.”
Jones said keeper Chelsi Russell was outstanding in goals despite a health scare that threatened to rule her out of the match.
“Amy Allen never stopped running all day, while Allison Nicholson was superb and Nan’s record speaks for itself,” he said.
“As good as it is to score goals it is just as important to keep a clean sheet and that’s what we did again today.”
Jones said conditions were extreme for both sides.
“It was hot and windy out there and both sides felt it — it was particularly draining,” he said.
“We will hit the training track this week and do a fair bit of leg work before honing our skill sessions in the lead-up to the grand final.
“Kew were gutted after the game — they never really threatened our goal and at the same time we could have ended up with a 4-0 or 5-0 scoreline.
“They have been the second-best team all year so you would expect to play them again but after that today they would have some self-doubt.”
Kew will play Southern United, which won its knockout final 4-3 in golden goal, for a spot in the decider.