A GOAL in injury time to Matt Crawford helped Wagga United open the Pascoe Cup season with a 2-2 draw against South Wagga on Sunday.
The Warriors looked set to start the new season with an upset until Crawford beat the South Wagga keeper and put the ball in the back of the net to level the scores at 2-2.
It was an equaliser in the dying minutes and proved to be one last twist to an entertaining round one fixture at Rawlings Park.
Wagga United took the lead 20 minutes into the contest when Max Lysaght found the back of the net from a long-range free kick.
United would lead for the next 55 minutes until South Wagga struck twice in five minutes.
The first came through Faisal Sulaiman after a Wagga United error near the goal line before South Wagga Luke Nichols put his team in front with a straight forward finish shortly afterwards.
Just as it looked like the perfect start for the team shaping as Pascoe Cup's big improvers, Crawford got on the end of a good ball and finished well to share the points.
Both coaches thought their teams had done enough to win.
"Definitely frustrated, I think we were the better team overall," Wagga United coach James Samson said.
"I think we were playing much better football and definitely deserved it but as you can see with football, it happens sometimes. Two lapses in concentration and you go down again."
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South Wagga counterpart Andy Heller believes his team cost themselves in the final minutes.
"We were frustrated with ourselves at half-time because we felt like we dominated possession, dominated the play and to go 1-0 down, we didn't feel like things were quite working for us so we changed things up in the second half and we got what we deserved," Heller said.
"Then the last five minutes we didn't play sensible football. It was almost like we were trying to score when actually we'd dominated the game for so long that all we had to do was keep the ball."
Heller, who has his sights set on finals, warned South Wagga will only get better.
"We had five or six out as well. That wasn't even our first grade side," Heller said.
"A lot of the players were but we've still got at least five to put into that team."
Wagga United 2 drew with South Wagga 2
Leeton 4 d Tolland 0
Tumut 3 drew with Lake Albert 3
Young 5 d Henwood Park 0
Hanwood 14 d Cootamundra 0
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