A tough game against one of the league favourites left the Blacks waiting for their first win.
SAASL Division 3 Round 2
Adelaide University Black 0-1 Gleeson
Eager to play their part in support, injured players from last week’s opener, Kevin Ugalde and Joe Henderson watched from the sidelines.
The Blacks almost took an early lead as Miro Vujica chipped the ball over the ‘keeper but it was cleared off the line by a Gleeson defender.
It was a back and forth game before Gleeson had their first meaningful chance from a corner but their player headed the ball over the bar from close range.
At 27 minutes, Gleeson took a hopeful shot but was easily controlled by ‘keeper Jacob Davey.
Most of the first half of the match was a midfield battle between the two sides.
Tom Macura was chopped down at 32 minutes on the edge of the box; a few inches closer and it would have been a penalty.
The resulting ball into the box was cleared.
Gleeson were determined to test the ‘keeper as their player took a shot from far out but was parried by the alert Davey.
A corner resulted and produced another chance for Gleeson but was saved and cleared out of the Black’s defensive third.
At 40 minutes, a poor clearance from the Blacks came back to the Gleeson player at the edge of the box who lined up a shot but was crucially blocked by Pravin Jeva.
During Gleeson’s next attack, the linesman was unaware that the ball went out of play before being whipped in to the box, knocked back out by a Blacks defender and drilled low in the goal to make it 1-0 to Gleeson at 41 minutes.
The half ended at 1-0 down for the Blacks.
Keen to inject some energy into the match, Luke Urban darted around the midfield, cutting out multiple Gleeson passes.
At 65 minutes, a defensive error from the Blacks led to a one-on-one with Davey, who produced a dazzling save to keep his team in with a chance at a comeback.
The Blacks pressed on with attractive football as Urban’s cheeky back-heel led to a string of passes that eventually saw Urban receive the ball again and whip it in for Mitchell Coleman’s header that just passed wide of the post.
With just 10 minutes to play, a dog ran across the field, halting play briefly.
Late in the game, Gleeson had the opportunity to end the Blacks’ hopes but sprayed the shot wide in the box.
In the final minutes, the Blacks had a host of last-ditch chances to earn at least one point from the match but none found the back of the net.
Gleeson’s controversial first half goal was enough to see them secure the win.
‘I’m happy with our defensive structure against one of the best teams in the league but we still have a lot of work to do’, Blacks coach Mohan Karthigeyan said in summary of the match.
Main Photo: William Chau