Mariners cop another loss as Jets win on the coast

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Kevin Rudd was Prime Minister last time the Newcastle Jets won at Central Coast Stadium and it would only be a single goal that would get them across the line in the F3 Derby on Sunday.

The Jets declared the match a must-win in order to secure a chance in the top six. Meanwhile while the Central Coast Mariners were scrounging for dignity after a season that has been far from their best.

Luis Garcia and Harry Ascroft had injury scares early on but the Spaniard didn’t let a corked thigh stop him from having two good chances, one featuring an all-class Bingham back heel.

Youngster Trent Buhagiar had plenty of ball in the first half and looked surprised to find himself with room to shoot, but his shot went high.

Minutes before half time, Danish import Morten Nordstrand took an excellent shot on target for the Jets with help from Leonardo, only to be stopped by magnificent hands on the part of Mariners goalie Paul Izzo.

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A scoreless first half was a physical encounter, Daniel Mullen copped yellow card for a heavy shoulder to Garcia and Josh Bingham and Steven Ugarkovic made it a true derby atmosphere when referee Ben Williams stepped in to quell a ‘heated discussion’.

The battle continued when Poljak was shown a controversial yellow card for his booking on Ascroft.

Newcastle then scored what would be the only goal of the match, through Ugarkovic with help from a sloppy miss by Josh Rose right on the nose of the net.

Garcia took time to rest a suspicious hammy while Daniel Heffernan entered the field for the first time since his one-minute appearance on New Year’s Eve.

With ten minutes to go Tomislav Uskok was handed a yellow card for descent to the referee before all hell broke loose when Mariners captain Nick Montgomery copped his eighth yellow card this season for a clash with Leonardo. He’ll be sitting next week out.

In the final moments there was promise for the home side who earned a free kick from a tussle to Bingham with no avail. Five minutes of stoppage time had the Mariners looking desperate. Three, maybe four, key opportunities arose but lucky defence from the Jets just wouldn’t let up.

Although a slender win, the visitors finally broke a dangerous trend by winning their first away game since Round Four of this season.

And while it’s clear the wooden spoon is eager to land itself at the Mariners this season, the Newcastle Jets will be fighting for another three points against Perth next week with the finals in close sight.

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Jade Toomey
A 20 year old Media and Law student trying to tame those stream-of-consciousness writing habits with an ickle bit of fun at the Central Coast Mariners.