EVEN the mud of Macquarie Field could do nothing to slow the slick skills and speed of the Jets Youth team as they continued their winning start in the Northern NSW State League yesterday.
The under-20s side stayed top of the table in their maiden campaign with a 3-1 defeat of Lake Macquarie, which could have been much worse for the hosts.
Kale Bradbery scored twice and James Virgili once, but the Jets wasted countless chances as they dominated possession with their superior skill, speed and fitness.
Assistant coach James Pascoe was pleased with the performance but conceded they should have won by more.
‘‘We rely on our structure, we want to control the tempo of the game with possession and our pressing from the front and I thought we did that,’’ Pascoe said.
‘‘I think conservatively we had 85 per cent possession, so from that point of view we’re relatively happy.
‘‘The downside is we realistically had 12 good chances and we took three. That was the negative along with conceding a late sloppy goal at the back, but they’re still young boys, they’re still learning.’’
Bradbery scored with a far-post header off a Virgili cross from the right in the 18th minute.
Virgili, who terrorised the Roosters with his pace down the right flank, calmly manoeuvred around advancing keeper Jake Stitt to put the Jets up 2-0 after 27 minutes.
Bradbery slotted home his second in the 60th minute after Blake Green caused a turnover and caught the Roosters on the counter.
Curtis Schuman scored for the hosts in the 90th minute after excellent lead-up work from Brady Parker.
But there was no hiding the dominance of the Jets, who drew praise from Roosters and A-League veteran Andre Gumprecht. The German limped off at half-time with a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
‘‘We expected them to play like that, we knew what they could do and we knew it was going to be hard to stop,’’ Gumprecht, who is heavily involved in junior coaching in the region, said. ‘‘Credit to the Jets boys, it’s great to see the up-and-coming players doing so well.’’
Pascoe praised the attitude of his players, whose immediate futures are clouded, because of the uncertainty surrounding the Jets’ place in the A-League.
Luke Remington was the only casualty for the youth team, coming off in the 41st minute with ankle ligament damage.
A-League players Connor Chapman and Jacob Pepper will return to the squad this week after their end-of-season breaks but Virgili will start a month-long rest.
Broadmeadow made it four wins from four games, thumping an understrength Bears side 5-1 at Weston Park on Saturday night.
Magic led 2-0 at half-time after goals from Rhys Tippett and Hakan Canli.
Robbie Turnbull pulled one back for Weston early in the second half, but Chris Berlin, Shane Paul and Scott Pettit scored to seal the win. The Bears were without Jamie Subat, Chris Cousins, Corey Fletcher and Mick Ryan.
John Majurovski and Clayton Poole scored braces as Hamilton racked up their first win of the season, downing West Wallsend 5-2 at Darling Street Oval yesterday.
Scott Smith scored twice as Charlestown defeated a 10-man Valentine Phoenix 5-1 at Lisle Carr Oval.
South Cardiff broke their duck for the year, downing Edgeworth 2-0 at Ulinga Oval.