Struggling Stingrays chase weekend double


In desperate need of points, the Illawarra Stingrays have a double chance to pull themselves out of the mire at JJ Kelly Park this weekend.

Sitting bottom of the table, the Rays meet Football NSW Institute (Saturday) and North West Sydney Koalas (Sunday), looking to end a dreadful run of form.

The club has lost its past six first grade fixtures, which has seen their record tumble to seven defeats and just three wins.

The Stingrays will be without the services of Erica Halloway, right, for this weekend's matches.

The Stingrays will be without the services of Erica Halloway, right, for this weekend's matches.

But in recent losses, the Rays have come within a whisker of victory, going down by just a single goal in each of their past three matches.

Coach Graham Shaw believes with this weekend's double-header his side can turn those marginal defeats in their favour.

"We will be looking to take six points this weekend. Both games are at home and both against teams we have beaten this year," Shaw said.

"If we can get ourselves six points that puts us in good stead when we meet a team like Northbridge, who are down around where we are on the table and a team we really look at.

"If all goes to plan, we can see ourselves jump up the table and not see ourselves in a position which is not so favourable."

Unfortunately for Shaw, he will be without club veterans Caitlin Cooper and Erica Halloway for both of the weekend's matches.

But the gaffer will welcome the addition of new goalkeeper Lisa Hartley after the club was without a full-time keeper for the past few fixtures.

"The keeper situation was obviously something that is really hurting us, with having no senior keepers available," Shaw said.

"Lisa has played at the Stingrays before and has played with us before.

"She has been playing with Woonona in the local women's division and is looking to get herself back to that top level again.

"It is a good fit for both of us because we need an experienced keeper."


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