A seventh minute own goal enabled Adelaide United to break their Foxtel National Youth League duck and carve out a 1-0 win over the Newcastle Jets.
A seventh minute own goal enabled Adelaide United to break their Foxtel National Youth League duck and carve out a 1-0 win over the Newcastle Jets at Thebarton Oval on Sunday.
The Reds got on the board in the seventh minute through an own goal against Nicholas Cowburn, before holding firm when down to 10 men for most of the second half following Cam Watson's 53rd-minute expulsion.
Adelaide dictated for extended stretches of the first half after starting with a bang and a slice of fortune when Matthew Bouzalas found an opening with a smart shot, which glanced off Cowburn and past unlucky Newcastle goal-keeper Ben Kennedy and was deemed by referee Rick Schneider an own goal.
The dangerous Anthony Costa almost doubled the lead on the half-hour mark when he cracked one past Kennedy and into the far post, the sliding Awer Mabil very nearly putting away an attempted second cherry bite.
A minute later James Brown found an opening for the visitors but his shot sailed well wide.
The Jets' best chance came late in the half when a high Nikola Milesunic deflection landed in the path of Radovan Pavicevic, whose header smacked off the crossbar.
The Reds had to work overtime to protect their 1-0 half-time advantage after Watson was handed a red card for a high challenge just outside the box.
From the ensuing free kick, Kale Bradbery's full-blooded strike cannoned into the crossbar and Adelaide breathed a sigh of relief.
Pavicevic worried the Reds with his pace and potency, while Bradbery continued to weave some magic, at one stage scooting past four Adelaide defenders en route to goal, only to be stopped by experienced Anthony Golec, who stood tall in defence all day.
Mabil owned his left flank but his afternoon ended in the 79th minute when he was crunched by three Jets in front of the Reds' dugout.
The young African was down for some time and received some sledging from Newcastle enforcer Taylor Regan, who also exchanged terse words with Adelaide coach Michael Valkanis.
The heat was intensifying and Reds skipper Dion Kirk also went down after copping a heavy knock near the end of regulation, lying prone for several minutes and emerging groggy and in the hands of the trainer for some time, reducing the hosts to nine men for some time.
The Jets chanced their arm in the dying moments, with a fierce Cowburn ping from long range beating leaping Adelaide custodian Paul Izzo, but cannoning into the crossbar before Newcastle captain Mitchell Oxborrow's nod was safely pouched by Izzo moments later, the home side holding their nerve and protecting their early lead with poise.
Adelaide United 1 (Cowburn 7m og) Newcastle Jets 0
@ Thebarton Oval