Wednesday 01 February 2017

Marinovic hat-trick highlights Bell Park victory

Marinovic heading

Mijo Marinovic outjumps Andrew Maclean in the Rangers’s defence.

Marinovic hat-trick highlights Bell Park victory

Roy Hay

Mijo Marinovic made a blistering start with his new club Bell Park scoring a hat-trick in a three-nil demolition of Geelong Rangers in the second round of matches in the Morris Finance Cup on Sunday night.

Bell Park came very close to promotion last season and has recruited well under coach John Karounos.

Marinovic was a brilliant pick-up from Corio and he will combine well with Matt Demo and Liam Page in attack.

Mijo Marinovic, Bell Park's hat-trick hero on debut

It took the host club a little time to play to the tall striker’s strengths—his ability to sprint into space when the ball is played in front of him and, of course, his aerial ability.

His first goal came after 29 minutes as Rangers three times failed to clear their lines and Marinovic was able to pounce on the loose ball, open up his body and finish with a shot into the corner.

Bell Park went further ahead from a corner kick headed home by Marinovic who completed the scoring on the hour mark after winning another loose ball and finishing sweetly.

Geelong Rangers in blue and Bell Park about to take the field

The second match was a dour affair between Geelong and Lara that ended in a scoreless draw.

Geelong had much more of the play, but resorted to more long balls rather than the close-passing game that has the hallmark of the club over the years.

Lara from Division Five last year really made a game of it, counter-attacking regularly but lacking a cutting edge.

Ben Houston probably came closest to scoring after 43 minutes, but was eventually caught in possession, while a combined move with Justin Wilson was also snuffed out.

Michael Boyar (7, Geelong) and Damian Nasta (8, Lara) fight for the ball.

Geelong could have taken all three points in the second last minute when they had a free kick about 25 metres from goal on a perfect angle for Michael Boyar’s inswinging right-footer.

Though he curled the ball beautifully around the defensive wall it did not have enough power to beat Lara keeper, Harley Marsden.

The results mean Bell Park tops Group B, while all four teams in Group A have a point.

Next Friday Geelong plays Surfside Waves at 6 pm, and then Corio meets Bell Park at 7.20 pm.

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