Newcastle Jets have broken their two-game losing spell in a crucial Round 5 game, edging out Adelaide United 2-1 at Marden Sports Complex.
Goals to a Katie Stengel volley and a beautiful curling free kick goal from Tori Huster put the visitors two goals.
The home side was able to regain control of the game through a header by Katie Naughton at the end of a pinpoint set-piece delivery from Danielle Colaprico, but they were unlucky not to equalise in the 89th minute, when Laura Johns’s strong shot came off the underside of the crossbar and bounced out.
This result sees the Jets move back into top four on the ladder, while United drop to eighth levelling with Sydney FC.
The clinical finish display from Adelaide that seized them the win against Perth Glory was not as noticeable this time around. It was a disjointed performance by the home side whose final passes let them down, unraveling chances that they had built up diligently, especially in the second half of the match.
Communication between players were also off, with the result easy overturned play which the Jets pounced on to start off their quick counterattacks.
Also unlike the Perth match, Adelaide had a slow start to the opening 45 minutes. The Reds turned it around on their return to the field. They dominated possession and press high – how they would have liked to start the game – with possibly 60% of the game being played in their attacking half. However, there was not the same sharp edge in the final third. In the end, no equaliser came the home team’s way even after peppering the Jets’ box with shots.
Newcastle’s defensive players were the standouts in the match, they clamped down on Adelaide’s attacking opportunities and were able to hold up well against the onslaught of pressure by the home side in the last 15 minutes of the game.
Hannah Brewer especially had an excellent game; any potential crosses by Reds’ wingers were cut out with strong challenges made by the pacy defender.
Though Emily van Egmond was missing from the starting XI due to Matildas duties, it was somewhat negated by the return Huster after being sidelined by a minor foot injury.
She was key in the middle of the park, filtering through passes to her fellow midfielders Clare Wheeler and Arin Gilliland to service their attackers higher up. Huster was also vital in set pieces, as evident when she made her mark on the scoreboard with a free kick goal.
Adelaide United will be heading over to the neighbouring state on Sunday to face Melbourne City at CB Smith Reserve, who were one of the few teams to have a bye during the international break.
Newcastle Jets, on the other hand, will be returning home for a bye.
Adelaide United 1 (Naughton 52’)
Newcastle Jets 2 (Stengel 31’, Huster 50’)