Beyond through to B-Grade grand final after penalty shoot-out
Barnies Beyond Blue earned a week off and a spot in the Orange B-Grade grand final after defeating competition leaders Kinross on penalties 3-2, when the scores were locked at 4-all after extra time in the first semi final of the weekend.
It was a very tight game, worthy of the competition’s first versus second-placed sides.
Kinross capitalised on a slow start from Beyond Blue and opened the scoring to lead by 2-0 at the 20 minute mark.
The outcome was looking dire for Barnies but they kept their heads up and a few substitutions let them to settle their game and work their way back into the contest.
An excellent shot from outside the box to the top right corner by Chris Davis put Beyond Blue on the board. Shortly after, Josh Horsley scored the equaliser with a good finish off a cross.
Not long before half time, Aaron Slender caught the Kinross defense out of position off a throw in, finding Chris Davis who with a good turn and shot, gave Barnies a 2-3 lead at the break.
In the second half, Barnies continued their momentum with a fourth goal, this time off a long range ball reaching Aaron Slender on the run who finished with a one on one with the keeper, hitting the bottom left corner.
However, the combination of a fatiguing Beyond Blue and the fitness of a young Kinross side soon came to the fore. Kinross came back to equalise with two goals. For the remaining 17 minutes, Barnies held out an aggressive Kinross to force the extra time.
With some motivational words at the break, Beyond Blue dug deep to find what reserve was left and not only held Kinross out, but took control of the game.
A couple near misses almost gave Barnies the lead but they were unable to score, sending the game to penalties.
Barnies keeper, Matthew Barr, will go down in history for his incredible effort in the goals, only allowing in 2 from 5 penalties.
The goal scorers from in game, meanwhile, each hit the back of the net to end what was a great show of character, managing to hold on despite fatigue to earn their third straight grand final appearance.