Red Devils bring up maiden NPLV victory in sensational fashion

BALLARAT Red Devils have wasted no time in notching up a historic maiden National Premier Leagues victory, downing the Goulburn Valley Suns in incredible circumstances on Saturday night.

The McDonalds Red Devils won a thrilling 3-2 encounter by way of a last-ditch attempt from substitute Michael Trigger inside the last 10 seconds of the game at Shepparton’s McEwen Reserve.

Trigger’s winning cross capped off a bizarre final minute of play in which Ballarat conceded a penalty after leading 2-1 for much of the second-half.

Ballarat started the match in style, with pacy winger Dom Swinton kicking the first of his two goals from a Suns error inside the opening three minutes.

The home side rallied to dominate most of the play for the first-half and drew level after a Craig Carley goal at the 19th minute.

The two teams entered half-time at 1-1 and it took some more magic from Swinton in the 62nd minute to break the deadlock.

Ballarat player-manager James Robinson was ecstatic to get the win after his charges almost let an assured three points slip against the somewhat unknown Suns.

“It (the match) wasn’t for the faint-hearted and the reaction of our boys in the face of the conceded goal was just outstanding,” Robinson said.

“We didn’t really know what we were up against but you plan for certain situations and scenarios. You give the boys the tools they need to fix them and our players did that really well.

“Goulburn had a few queries that our boys had to identify and put some solutions to – they’ll trouble plenty of teams this year.

“They were very well organised and they’re in the same boat as us.”

michael.pollock@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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