South Hits Six In Opening Round Rout
PS4 NPL Victoria Round 1 Wrap
PlayStation 4 NPL Victoria Wrap
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By Katie Lambeski
Reigning PlayStation 4 NPL Victoria premier South Melbourne made an emphatic statement to open the season by dispatching their rival Heidelberg United with a 6-0 win at Lakeside Stadium. A first-half hat-trick from Nick Epifano and Milos Lujic’s goal did the damage before the break, with half-time sub Matthew Theodore adding a fifth ten minutes into the second half, leaving Iqi Jawadi to end the rout with a tap-in goal moments before full-time.
South Melbourne FC 6 (Epifano 12' 38' pen 44' Lujic 36' Theodore 54' Jawadi 89') Heidelberg United FC 0
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Heidelberg were made to pay for not capitalising on early momentum, flooding forward to have South kept in their half early. The home side looked increasingly threatening on the break as the game progressed, with newcomers Marcus Schroen and Matt Millar helping turn the game with their parts in the first half goal glut that put the result beyond doubt.
South were able to see out the second half with little drama, though tempers would flare just before second half stoppage time, ending what truly was a stunning game of football.
Oakleigh Cannons FC 0 Port Melbourne "Sharks" Soccer Club 0 | U20: 2-0
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The first round of the PS4 NPL Victoria began with a tense 0-0 draw between Oakleigh Cannons and Port Melbourne at Jack Edwards Reserve. Both sides had opportunities in front of goal, with Lambros Honos and Dusan Bosnjak (after coming off the bench) threatening for their sides but neither were able to make the decisive breakthrough as the match petered out to a draw.
Friday night’s triple header saw reigning champions Bentleigh Greens prevail over newly-promoted FC Bulleen Lions at Kingston Heath, taking all three points through an early goal from Tyson Holmes for a 1-0 win. The visitors best chance came at the 38th minute from new recruit Takanori Nishimoto, chances for the home side came through Wayne Wallace, Ryan Paczkowski but were frittered away, fortunately for the Greens, it didn’t come back to haunt as they saw the game through.
Melbourne Knights FC 1 (Colosimo 63') Green Gully S.C 1 (Breeze 8') | U20: 4-4
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Melbourne Knights and Green Gully SC played out a physical contest at Knights Stadium, with the sides having to settle for a point apiece after a 1-1 draw. A 8th minute strike from Gully winger Mathew Breeze from distance tumbled into bottom left corner to give the away side the early advantage, unfortunately Breeze would be stretchered off for what appeared to be a serious knee injury later on.
Green Gully almost doubled their lead immediately after halftime, with a Rodrigo Vargas header hitting the back of the net, but was disallowed for a foul in the lead-up. It would prove to be a defining moment of the physical contest, as the Knights would restore parity just after the hour mark through Jacob Colosimo.
Pascoe Vale FC 2 (Youssef 58' Ferrante pen 86') Avondale FC 0 | U20: 2-3
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Pascoe Vale FC got their season off on the right note, with second half goals from Joseph Youssef and Michael Ferrante earning Paco a 2-0 win over Avondale FC at CB Smith Reserve.
A scramble in the box allowed Youssef to strike the ball home from close range to give Pascoe Vale the advantage in a close contest full of drama. Avondale FC were awarded a penalty at the 70th following a Nathan Megic foul on Abrahim Yango, only for Yango’s shot to hit the post and Pascoe Vale custodian Erik Pryce to save the rebound shot. The home side nabbed a penalty of their own, only for the kick to be delayed due to sprinklers. After a seven-minute delay, Ferrante cooly converted to ensure Paco took all three points.
Melbourne Victory Youth’s started their new life in the Victorian top flight in perfect fashion, defeating Northcote City FC at Epping Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Joey Katebian’s second half goal, a header from a Kieran Dover cross at the 76th minute, earned the home side the 3 points.
Neither side could find an early breakthrough, not for lack of trying as Victory goalkeeper Lucas Spinella was forced into saves early, with Katebian and Anthony Duzel also prominent early. The close contest was left to be decided by Katebian’s strike midway through the second half.
Hume City F.C. 3 (Timmins 51' Markelis 59' Espindola 71') Richmond SC 1953 0 | U20: 2-3
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Hume City FC earned themselves a dream start to the season at ABD Stadium on Saturday night, with second half goals from the returning Shaun Timmins, Theo Markelis and Hume debutant Hernan Espindola sealing a 3-0 result for the home side over Richmond SC.
Richmond were able to keep the hosts at bay early, but weren’t able to sustain a challenge as Hume stamped their authority over the contest as Espindola wreaked havoc. The home side recovered from losing Daniel Visevic midway through the first half, with substitute Markelis having an impact with a goal in the second half.
Results and ladders: www.nplvic.com.au
PlayStation 4 NPL 2 East
By Damir Kulas
The Goulburn Valley Suns snatched a pulsating 3-2 victory over the Springvale White Eagles thanks to a strike from Craig Carley deep into injury time. The hosts opened the scoring on the half hour mark when Jason Ricciuti scored from the spot after Ryan Babere was brought down by goalkeeper Mumtadhar Alghazly.
Carley equalised for the visitors in the 62 minute moments after the referee had allowed advantage for the Suns following a foul on Giannopoulos by Dimitar Mitkov. The incident proved pivotal as Mitkov was given his second yellow following the goal with Goulburn taking full advantage via a goal from substitute Danial Marimbe in the 73rd minute.
White Eagles substitute Damir Stoilovic equalised in the 90th minute when his header was fumbled over the line by Alghazly. Undeterred by that setback, Goulburn attacked down the other end and Giannopoulos cross into the box eventually found Carley who finished expertly past Lajos Hun causing jubilant scenes on the visiting bench and disappointment for the hosts.
Brunswick City Soccer Club 1 (Serratore 34') Eastern Lions SC-The Official Site 4 (Burfoot 19' Doutsas 60' Beamish 79' Ajao pen 90') | U20: 2-3
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A dominant second half-showing saw the Eastern Lions stun hosts Brunswick City as new manager George Karkaletsis began his era at the club with a defeat. Sam Burfoot got the ball rolling for the Lions in the 20th minute with an expert striker before City defender Frank Serratore equalised in the 34th minute after a set-piece scramble in the box. Substitute Chris Droutsas gave Jim Williams’ side the lead on the hour mark in similar circumstances and in doing so scored on his debut for the club. Phillip Ajao then set-up another substitute in Mitch Beamish for the third goal before rounding of the victory with a goal of his own from the spot despite the best efforts of City goalkeeper Wesley Coles.
Murray United FC 1 (Walker 90+5') Dandenong City SC 1 (Antoniadis 70') | U20: 4-2
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A last minute goal from Zac Walker gave Murray United a share of the spoils in a 1-1 draw with Dandenong City in a match played in warm conditions on the state border. City opened the scoring in the 70th minute when Chris Antoniadis pounced on a mix-up by United goalkeeper Jonathon Shaw who had got his lines all wrong in attempting to clear the ball. The visitors looked to be heading back to Melbourne with all three points only for a defensive header to be latched onto by the former Melbourne Heart Youth Team striker who slotted past Damir Salcin as joy erupted on the home bench.
Dandenong Thunder SC 4 (Osmancevic 49' 55' Bennett 61' Kocari 62') Nunawading City FC 0 | U20: 0-1
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A devastating 13 minute second half spell from Dandenong Thunder saw the 2012 VPL Champions earn a dominant 4-0 victory over Nunawading City. The home side debuted former Socceroos Simon Colosimo and Kristian Sarkies in their starting eleven in what was Manager Huss Skenderovic’s first game in charge of the side. A frustrating first half for the hosts was brought to life early in the second half when Osmancevic caught the goalkeeper out of his line before slotting the ball past him. He soon had a second before fellow new signing Daniel Bennett chip over the City shot-stopper made it 3-0. Spurred on by some strong support, Thunder made it 4-0 a minute later when Osmancevic unselfishly set-up veteran Veton Korcari who calmly tapped it home.
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PlayStation 4 NPL 2 West
By Brandon Galgano
St Albans Saints SC 1 (Monek 71') North Geelong Warriors FC 1 (Townley pen 77')
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The headline clash for the weekend though took place at Churchill Reserve on Sunday afternoon as St Albans hosted recently relegated North Geelong for the first edition of the ‘Croatian Derby’.
With both sides fielding a number of new signings made over the off-season it was St Albans who took control of the game early on, dominating the first half of the contest.
Despite having the better of possession though the final ball was lacking with North keeper Daniel Zilic rarely tested in the opening exchanges of the contest.
It was the visiting side who took control of the second period though, moving the ball with intent and forcing the home side to sit deep and absorb pressure.
Experienced striker Gareth Richards then spurned a golden opportunity to give the visitors the lead after finding space inside the six yard box but he fired over the bar.
It was then a swift counter attack which brought about the opening goal as new signing Joseph Monek raced onto a through ball before rounding Zilic and slotting the ball into an empty net to make it 1-0 St Albans in the 71st minute.
The goal only further spurned the visitors into action and they equalised six minutes later from the penalty spot after Jurcic was brought down by debutant goalkeeper Alex Baird.
Defender Matt Townley made no mistake from the spot to get his side a point in what was an entertaining opening round fixture.
The round was kicked off on Saturday afternoon at Chaplin Reserve as Moreland City succumbed to a late draw at the hands of Sunshine George Cross.
Following an opener from new signing Apai Ukuno it took a 91st minute free kick from Juso Julardzija to level the match with the former North Geelong man proving the hero for the home side.
Werribee City FC 3 (Marafioti 3' Vidanoski 12' Martin 68') Whittlesea Ranges FC 3 (Ofli 59' 69' 90+5') U20: 2-7
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Werribee City threw away a 2-0 half time lead at home against Whittlesea Ranges, drawing 3-3 at Galvin Park with the visitors equalising in second half stoppage time to guarantee a point.
Atilla Ofli was Whittlesea's hero with scoring a hat-trick to save his side from defeat.
Ballarat Red Devils made a slow start, going down 3-1 at home against an impressive Moreland Zebras outfit.
The Zebras put the game in safe keeping up 3-0 by half-time thanks to Baggio Yousif's first-half hat-trick. Patrick Karras pegged a goal back for Ballarat early in the second half but the goal did not spark a comeback for the home side.
After half an hour Melbourne City broke through against Bendigo City FC to enjoy a one-sided win. Phil Petreski put a free kick in the top corner to break through on half an hour, with Stefan Zinni consolidating City's advantage with a tap-in minutes later.
Jordan Hall and Giuseppe Marafioti ensured City left with an early boost to the goal difference by netting in the second half.
Results and ladders: www.nplvic.com.au