Box Hill United ladies face Calder United in the 2019 Nike FC Cup final, and tenacious midfielder Caitlin Storay highlighted how the team’s “positivity and belief” have shone through in the campaign so far.
Leading up to the all-NPLW clash on Sunday (11 Aug, 5 PM kick-off) at the CB Smith Reserve, our senior women pieced together a run-in built upon 20 goals across four matches.
On their way to wins against Boroondara Eagles, Eltham Redbacks, Alamein and Melbourne University, the Brian Roberts-managed outfit conceded just one goal.
Reviewing the Cup journey this term ahead of the grand finale, Storay said, “It has been a great achievement by the team. We have worked hard to get where we are this season, starting as a whole new team. So, making the Cup final together is awesome and shows hard work pays off.
“The main [attributes have been] the positivity and belief we have [had] in one another, and the high expectations we hold ourselves and each other to. [It is] the grit and determination to keep going until the final whistle.”
Storay, who signed on the dotted line for Box Hill before the 2019 season following a stint at Heidelberg United, kicked off the Cup proceedings for us with the first goal against Boroondara Eagles in Round 3.
Now that the team are into their second consecutive Cup final, the Tasmanian midfielder is treating it as a personal milestone. She said, “It is a very special occasion anytime you get to be part of a team that makes a final. You have got to make the most of that experience and learn as much as you can.
“It is also special because moving from Tasmania to play over in Melbourne and grow as a player – this is an experience I would not have gotten if I had stayed where I was.”
Incidentally, Box Hill are up against the same opposition who pipped them to the Cup title last season. But a new-look Box Hill outfit have picked up a league win against Calder this term already.
Looking ahead to the tactical challenge expected from Sunday’s match-up, the 27-year-old said, “We can expect them to try and exploit their pace upfront, with quick balls in over the top. They are a technically good team – physical and fit. They are top of the league for a reason, so we know we are up against a quality opposition and nothing will come easy.”
Gearing up for the crucial showdown, the former Launceston City midfielder shared her optimism with her colleagues, as has been evident in their combative displays thus far.
“Finals are totally different – it is one chance [and there are] no do-overs. You have got to give everything and then more, and our team can do that,” Storay said. “We know that we can work until the very end, [and] give everything until the final whistle. We have to be switched on from the start and [be] confident in our abilities.”
Images courtesy: Football Victoria