Football can be cruel sometimes.
Dunedin Technical found that out on Saturday night.
One save ended its Kate Sheppard Cup defence in its quarterfinal at Logan Park.
Una Foyle’s gloves proved the defining factor as she helped Coastal Spirit to a penalty shootout victory.
The scores had been locked at 1-1 after extra time, following a scoreless 90 minutes of football.
Foyle had been outstanding all game and delivered the decisive play.
The Coastal goalkeeper pulled off a fantastic diving save to knock away a reasonably well-taken penalty from Chelsea Whittaker.
Tech dispatched its next four shots – although Foyle got a glove to one more – but Coastal was clinical in making all of its own.
The loss was Tech’s first in 677 days, when it lost to Glenfield Rovers in the 2017 cup semifinal.
It was a tough one to take for Tech captain Coral Seath.
However, she said it was the inability to put away chances throughout the game that cost it.
“It’s hard to lose a game on penalties.
“I don’t really think it’s a right way to lose, but at the end of the day they need a result.
“In saying that, I’ve been reflecting on the game all day and I’m sure the girls have – it came down to putting in chances and we didn’t do that.
“We’re all pretty proud.
“We put in an incredible game and we definitely gave it our all. I don’t think anyone can walk away saying we didn’t do that.”
Seath felt the side had “every single chance possible” to score throughout the game.
However, while it was creating opportunities it was unable to put one away.
Meanwhile Foyle was outstanding in goal to deny Tech.
At the same time, the Tech defence held up well.
Coastal made the breakthrough in the 98th minute.
Melanie Cameron received a ball over the top and gathered it as Tech protests for a hand ball were turned down.
Tech keeper Jade Middleditch was able to get a glove to it, but was unable to keep it out.
However, Tech had the better of the second extra-time period.
After a long period on the Coastal goal line and several corners, Madeline Roseke equalised.
Ruby Anderson got herself into the box to put the ball across for Roseke to make it 1-1 in the 117th minute.
That left the teams to go to penalties – something Tech has done only once in recent years.
On that occasion, three years ago against Roslyn Wakari, it also came out on the wrong side.
“We’re all pretty disappointed,” Seath said.
“But I think we’re gracious losers. We came off knowing it was an amazing game of football and we did every- thing we could.
“Unfortunately, you just have games where it’s not meant to be and it wasn’t meant to be.
“We still want Coastal to do extremely well.
“They’re still representing the South and like I’ve said before, the South Island has a point to get across and I think it’s important they do that.”
Wellington United, Hamilton Wanderers and Eastern Suburbs also advanced to the semifinals.
By Jeff Cheshire ODT