FIRST TO THE BALL: Gympie keeper Troy Cochrane stopped a goal in a previous match, but had to have six stitches after colliding with an opposing player on Saturday.
FIRST TO THE BALL: Gympie keeper Troy Cochrane stopped a goal in a previous match, but had to have six stitches after colliding with an opposing player on Saturday. Brett Wortman

Tough day for Diggers

FOOTBALL: The Gympie Diggers went down 5-1 at home after losing their goal keeper Troy Cochrane in the first 10 minutes.

The division one goalie had to get six stitches around his eye area, after he collided with an opposing player.

Cochrane was rushed to hospital bleeding.

Despite the loss, coach Joachim Klein said they were lucky they had two strong keepers and Tim Cross was ready to take Cochrane's place in goal.

Klein said he regarded Maroochydore as one of the better teams they have played and they were just simply a stronger side on the day.

The Diggers not only faced an onslaught from the Swans but both sides had to play in freezing temperatures.

A decent crowd turned up to support the home team but Klein reckons it was so cold, some supporters in the crowd were turning blue.

The Diggers trailed behind the Maroochydore Swans from the start, already down by 4-0 at half-time.

"They played well between our line," Klein said.

He said regardless of what the Diggers did, they could not stop Maroochydore's momentum.

However, the Diggers did not change their play much during the second half, and let only one goal in.

They were also able to put away a goal, scored by Billy Bayldon.

"They (Maroochydore) probably relaxed a bit too," Klein said.

"We kept the ball a bit more and created a few chances during the second half."

The Swans had a slow start to the season but have improved throughout the Sunshine Coast Football competition and were now sitting fifth on the ladder.

"We did not play badly - we were just up against a good team," he said.

"If we were a bit luckier, we might have scored a few more.

"We were weak in the middle and Maroochydore were able to put a few away."

In the past few weeks, the Diggers have been playing better as a team but will have another tough match on Saturday when they play third placed Noosa, at Noosa.

With so many unavailable on Saturday, Klein was hoping for a bigger turn out at training on Thursday .

Two things the team will be working on is being more comfortable on the ball and moving the ball around more effectively.

With only four games left, the Diggers won't be in the finals but all the players are looking to finish off the season strongly.

Gympie Times


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