Box Hill United senior women’s new goalkeeper Bethany Mason-Jones made her bow in perfect fashion as the side brushed aside Southern United 10-0 at Monterey Reserve on Saturday.
The Box Hill ladies hardly broke a sweat as Emma Hubbard struck four and Asuka Kakazu a double, while skipper Saphri Lines, Olivia Ellis, Natasha Dakic and substitute Hayley Geurts each grabbed goal-a-piece.
Following the side’s NPLW Round 9 exploits, Mason-Jones was delighted to have a clean slate to her name, and said, “It’s good to have the first game a win. I am always a bit nervous when I am joining a new team. But I am happy. The girls are good to be around, easy to get along with.
“It was good to have a game where we could move the ball around and get a feel for the way we want to play. After the past few training sessions that I have had with [the team], it was good to finally see everything coming together [and] get the momentum going.”
The 21-year-old is a former Box Hill U/16s player, having joined the youth ranks here in 2012. She swapped Box Hill for the Elite Athletes Program in 2013, and won the Golden Glove with 10 clean sheets with Bundoora United in 2015.
Stints at South Melbourne and Calder United fast-tracked her career, and Mason-Jones joined Melbourne Victory’s W-League team in 2016-17 – making her debut against rivals Melbourne City.
Lifting the 2018/19 Premiers title with Victory was a crowning glory in her budding career. Looking back, the youngster said, “That was one of the biggest highlights in my career to win a W-League Premiership. We had a really good culture going on at Victory and that was because of the characters we had around. I was honoured to be a part of that experience.”
On her debut against City, she added, “It was just being thrown in the deep end. [But] it was good, because being thrown into a Melbourne derby in my first game – it really challenges you and it’s make-or-break. I had to take that experience and opportunity, and build on it. I think that’s what I have done over the past three seasons.”
Mason-Jones, who also played futsal with the Bayside Pirates Futsal club, is now motivated to fight for the no. 1 spot at Box Hill and reasoned, “I am finally at a different stage in my career where I want to be building on my leadership as well as my own game. Box Hill is going to bring new levels to my game.
“Now is a good challenge for me, because I get to help develop the young players [and] be a leader. I feel confidence in the team to step up when they need, and I think we’ll strengthen as a team throughout the season and become more confident in each other.”