LITHGOW PANTHERS may have had a slow start but they pulled themselves together to get a 2-1 win over Bathurst Souths on Saturday.
Souths took an early lead in the game before Panthers struck back with two goals in quick succession during the second quarter, and that's how the scoreboard remained until the end.
Coach Mick Millar said his side once again managed to get off to an undesirable start going down 1-nil in the first quarter.
Souths got on the board first through a Sarah Watterson goal from the field.
"The second quarter was much better as we started to control the play and execute two penalty corners which was pleasing," he said.
The visitors didn't lose the intensity over the second quarter but were put under the pump by an improved and clinical Panthers attack in the second quarter.
The barrage of offence proved hard for Souths to contain and eventually Panthers pair Annie Buckley and Caitlin Burns put away quick-fire penalty corners.
"We found ourselves making good play in patches resulting in goal scoring opportunities, but unfortunately these chances were either being quelled by the South's goalkeeper or our aim was a little off," Millar said.
Millar said during the fourth quarter his side managed to get themselves into a number of pressure situations where Souths had repeated chances at scoring where they were awarded penalty corners.
"It was pleasing to have repealed these changes and I was proud of the girls' resilience and attitude toward the situation they found themselves in," he said.
Panthers breakdown in defence and lapse in getting setup quickly allowed Souths forwards to make good yards and penetration resulting in their early goal, but the Lithgow side didn't panic.
"We have been down several times early in matches this year and managed to find a way to take control of the match and execute future chances made," he said.
Millar said a standout player for his side was Erin Burns in defence.
"Her defence was exceptional in stemming their run away attack, whereas our back five also worked well in interchanging their positions," he said.
"The match was tough as is always expected against Souths and the scoreline shows just how close the match was."
Millar said the girls would be working on consistencies before the next match.
"We know where we are making mistakes and we are trying to rectify and make better those uncontrollable situations for the future," he said.
This weekend is a general bye for all teams but Millar said the Panthers won't be resting.
"We will be training as normal but we may slow down our processes to entrench some of the play understandings for the squad," he said.
Lithgow (24 points) extended their margin at the top of the ladder to 10 points on Saturday evening and remain unbeaten through 2021.
Souths find themselves in a share of fifth place (on 10 points) with St Pat's and Orange Ex-Services.
LITHGOW PANTHERS 2 (Annie Buckley, Caitlin Burns) defeated SOUTHS 1 (Sarah Watterson)
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