MetroStars 3 Bentleigh Greens 3 (3-4 on pens)
MetroStars SC 3
Esposito (56’) Simic (90+5) Dodd (113’)
Bentleigh Greens 3 (4-3 on penalties)
Lucas (26’) Pilkington (81’) Ruthven (97’)
In an absolute thriller, SA club MetroStars came back three times but they couldn’t win in the shootout, losing 4-3 to Bentleigh in the shootout at Elite Systems Football Centre .
The Greens thought they had it won but with virtually the last kick in regulation time, a 10-man MetroStars equalised.
But with the extra man, Bentleigh took the lead in extra time before Travis Dodd hit a superb equaliser to take the game to a shootout.
The visitors from Victoria were dealt a blow early with key player Wayne Wallace going off inside the first 25 minutes.
But just minutes later the Greens took the lead, Kieran Dover (a late replacement for Kamal Ibrahim) pushing the ball through to prolific Chris Lucas who beat the onrushing keeper.
One goal to the good at halftime but the plucky MetroStars hit back with Fabian Barbiero supplying Christian Esposito who finished well to draw level.
After MetroStars went down to 10 men with Liam Wooding sent off minutes earlier, the Greens hit back from a corner with 10 to go.
A deep corner and the ball was played back into the danger zone and an unmarked Luke Pilkington made it 2-1 for the visitors.
With a sniff of Cup glory, Greens thought they had it won. But with literally the last action of the game, Stefan Simic popped up in the box driving his left foot shot firmly into the net to send the game into extra time.
The Greens didn’t panic and early in the first half of extra time, Troy Ruthven’s free kick snuck home under the wall to restore the Greens’ lead.
And it should’ve been 4-2 but Lucas fluffed his lines. It proved costly.
The home side hit back with Travis Dodd restoring parity on 113 minutes.
Both sides were fatiguing at 3-3 before a thrilling shootout.