The Weston Bears have a chance to draw something from their year from hell when they face Maitland Magpies in the Coalfields Derby at Cook Square Park on Sunday.
The Maitland Magpies handed the Weston Bears a lesson winning 3-0 at Weston despite missing defender Brock Oakley for a red-card in the first half of their round seven encounter in May.
The clubs’ fortunes have contrasted markedly since with the Magpies in red-hot form and on the cusp of making the semi-finals and the Bears still chasing their first win of the season.
While the results have not gone the Bears way, the side has blooded a new generation of home-grown talent and shown enormous resolve in sticking to their cause.
Weston have pushed their opponents, but errors have proved costly and a 3-2 loss to Charlestown City Blues could easily have been a win.
Jake Barner starred for the Bears up forward with a double, but the Blue were able to make the most of their opportunties.
Bears coach Trevor Morris said his side created plenty of opportunities but were unable to capitalise on them fully.
In contrast three defensive slips by the Bears led to three goals by the Blues.
Morris said he continued to be impressed by the effort, endeavour and enthusiasm of his players in what had been a year from hell.
“Unfortunately, we invite pressure onto ourselves with errors and every time the opposition seems to score.
“We created a lot of opportunities which reflects so well on the boys, they have never given up hope. We just couldn’t capitalise on them fully.
“Jake Barner had a very good day. His two goals were real reward as he worked tirelessly up front for us.”
Maitland midfielder Ryan Broadley capped off a best-on-ground performance with a goal in the Magpies 4-1 win against Lambton Jaffas on Saturday.
Matt Thompson continued his great form in front of goal with a double and former Bears skipper Carl Thornton got the fourth in a comprehensive performance by the Magpies at Arthur Edden Oval.
Meanwhile, the Bears under 22s had a 1-1 draw against Charlestown which they should have won comfortably whilst the under 19s had a 3-0. The results keep both sides in the hunt for finals.
On Saturday, the four Bears Youth team played The Emerging Jets with the under 17s losing 2-1. The under 15s lost 2-1, the under 14s had a 0-0 draw and the 13s won 2-0. The youth teams are away on Sunday against Broadmeadow.
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