FOR the Ballarat Lady Devils, Sunday’s win over Mooroolbark was a case of job done, but not done well.
After leading the game 3-0 early in the second half, the Blockbuster Lady Devils slipped into cruise control and Mooroolbark was able to peg back two goals.
This sent the Ballarat camp briefly into shock, but it was able to recompose and wrest back control of the game in the final minutes to secure the three points.
Delaney Martin opened the scoring when her corner was palmed into the goals by the Mooroolbark goalkeeper.
The Lady Devils then netted from another corner when Lulu Al-Huneidi was able to slam the ball home from a scramble in the box. Jasmine Emselle then slid one in at the back post to round out the scoring for the Lady Devils five minutes into the second half.
Ballarat then conceded its first goal in four matches when Amanda Kovacev failed to attack a through ball and was then injured in the resulting tussle, leaving the Mooroolbark player to curl the ball home from the edge of the 18-yard box.
The visitors doubled their score minutes later.
Boroondara’s 7-0 win against Albert Park means that the Lady Devils slip back to third on the Football Federation Victoria women’s state league one table on goal difference.
However, Boroondara still have to face league-leaders Monbulk in the last game of the season.
Ballarat now has a week off before facing fourth-placed Doncaster away from home. This match looms as a big challenge for the Lady Devils; the last time the two sides met Doncaster led 2-0 until the Ballarat girls found the net twice in the final 10 minutes of the game.
In preparation, the Lady Devils will need to instil confidence in several players who seemed to be second guessing themselves at the weekend. As well as this they will need to focus on getting the combination on the left hand side of the park more in tune.
Delaney Martin did well throughout the game, but Ballarat struggled to find a partner for her on the left-wing to offer balance, and most of Mooroolbark’s attacks were launched down this flank.
Ballarat did have several positives to take out of the game. Millie Martin attacked with potency from right-back and appears to be relishing her new role, while Emma Moran put in another strong performance up front, giving the Lady Devils structure in the attacking third and holding up the play when necessary.