After a torrid month of tackling their title rivals, the Illawarra Stingrays face a new danger.
The Rays emerged from wins over Macarthur Rams and Manly United and a loss to Sydney University in second position on the NSW Women’s National Premier League ladder with four rounds remaining.
They are three points adrift of Uni, but now face teams at the lower end of the standings, starting with last-placed Sutherland on Sunday.
“It’s a whole different challenge,” coach Carmelina Moscato said.
“We’ve been playing these tight, intense games, with a lot on the line and now you have to try and prepare for teams that have nothing to lose.
“So we really have to be prepared to deal with something different and not drop our guard at all.”
After dropping the points to Uni a fortnight ago, the Stingrays responded in emphatic fashion last weekend, thrashing the Rams 5-1, with Hannah Beard scoring a double.