The football Whanganui women came desperately close to securing a draw against Moturoa AFC on Sunday, only to fall at the last hurdle.

Moturoa earned a free kick in the 89th minute and made the most of it, burying the ball in the back of the net to win the game 1-0.

It was the final round of the GR Engineering Women's Federation League and Whanganui ended their campaign at the bottom of the table, winning just one of 12 games.

Coach Matt Calvert said he was disappointed with how the game ended, but proud of the fight in his team.


"It was a really good game of football, the girls started really well and last time we played them we conceded nine, so we knew that defensively we'd have to keep our shape," he said.

"We did that well in the first half, we had really good opportunities and had them pinned in their half, but unfortunately, we didn't take them.

"The girls deserved a point from the game and they were unlucky in the way that the goal was conceded and scored, but they can hold their heads up high."

Calvert said that his first year as a senior coach had been a real eye-opener and he had learned a lot throughout the season.

During the off season, he planned to have discussions with each of his players, in which he would give them feedback and allow them the opportunity to do the same in return.

He sung the praises of players Candice Armstrong and Alice Hetherington as having standout seasons, but also said the performances of another had gone under the radar.

"Arini Ross-Spooner is the most under-rated player in our team, she spent the whole season effectively playing out of position.

"Have I heard any complaint out of her? No. Her enthusiasm for the game is brilliant and she has had a very solid season."

The Whanganui women will be back next year to try to improve on this season and Calvert hoped that there would be a bit more strength in depth when it comes around.

"We haven't achieved what we wanted to achieve, but we've taken steps in the right direction and given women's football a higher profile in Whanganui," Calvert said.

"There was never a point in the season where their attitudes dropped, they knew it was a tough league and they bought into that.

"When we do play, we can play some great football, we finished the season brilliantly and gave some teams a real wake-up call."