Spirit recover for vital draw

WESTERN Spirit remained unbeaten after a sluggish 1-1 draw against surprise packets Southside Eagles in Saturday night's Division 1 clash at Bulimba.

However, much of the drama was at Richlands where the Ipswich Knights were ambushed 5-2 by Queensland Lions.

Knights coach Ian Carson was yesterday still upset at what he called a number of poor decisions from an inexperienced referee.

While conceding his team was also hampered by the stop-start season, Carson said the match between two of the competition's leading sides deserved better refereeing.

“I can't complain about the boys' effort. It was excellent,” Carson said. “We were very unlucky not to win it.

“Every time we got on top, they (Lions) got a decision that turned the game.”

After Knights striker Trent Griffiths equalised 1-1 in the 27th minute, Lions went 2-1 up after being awarded a penalty.

But it wasn't until midway through the second half Lions were able to go 3-1 up before Knights speedster Phil Brown pulled a goal back.

As the Knights pushed forward for another goal, Lions scored two late goals.

“Lions are a good side. On a level playing field, there's not much between us,” the coach said.

Carson said being unable to play the previous week was also difficult for his team.

“Last week, the boys were jumping out of their skin. They were ready to go (before the game was postponed),” Carson said.

“It's getting harder and harder to get their emotions up.

“We haven't got any consistency at the moment.

“It's no-one's fault. It's all in the hands of the God at the moment.”

Carson said his team would rebound strongly once they got some more game time.

“We'll be strong. We'll just start again,” he said.

Meanwhile, Western Spirit coach Nev O'Sullivan was yesterday reflecting on his team's draw after a disappointing start.

“It was like we were under-7s in the first half,” O'Sullivan said.

“In the second half, we probably had about four or five good chances but didn't get the bikkies.”

Striker Phil Randal scored the first goal 25 minutes into the game before Southside equalised just before the break.

The game opened up in the second half after Spirit captain Richie Armstrong was red-carded along with an Eagles player.

“I don't even know what happened. I didn't see it,” O'Sullivan said of the send-offs.

“In the end, I was happy with a point away from home.

“I was quite impressed with Southside. They are mobile, they move the ball well, they break pretty quick.”

Ipswich City's scheduled weekend match against Rocklea United was postponed until April 30.

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