FALCONS hosted Olympians on Saturday evening in a traditionally fiery and feisty Gippsland Soccer League contest based on a storied rivalry between the two sides.
The home side started positively and drew first blood when Gianni Salvatore opened the scoring on 12 minutes.
Olympians worked itself into the game and was rewarded with a contentious penalty which Frank Albanese converted just before the break.
The second half saw the youthful Falcons side put the Traralgon club to the sword.
Conor Clarke kicked off a goal fest on 65 minutes from the penalty spot with Salvatore involved again.
Kevin Carcellar made it 3-1 with a simple finish on 70 minutes.
Isaac Abas converted a wonderful team goal eight minutes later before Jesse Kennedy added another on 86 minutes.
Olympians was able to grab a late consolation in injury time but Falcons ran out hefty 5-2 winners to increase their unbeaten streak to four games.
Monash v Moe
MOE’S attacking department was light on with Jason Koppen and Adrian Savage missing, but the return of Lee Dastey to the backline added much needed rigidity.
Monash started well and nearly went up through Coen Slaughter, who fired past the keeper only to be denied by the upright. The back and forth battle tipped in Moe’s favour on 27 minutes via the boot of Dastey, when the Red Devils coach fired an unstoppable free kick into the far corner to go 1-0 up at the break.
The Wolves came out with renewed spark and began to pepper the Moe goal, but could not force Peter Albanese into a meaningful save.
Monash introduced Eric Sostak with immediate reward as the veteran linked up with Ty Christy inside the box before Daryn Cummings rifled the ball into the top corner.
The game opened up as both teams pushed hard for the winner, before Monash was reduced to 10 men after Trent Felici brought down a goal-bound Sam Lietzau. Moe capitalised on its numerical advantage and found a late winner through Nick Dastey, who headed home a Kev O’Farrell cross to break Monash hearts. Final score 2-1.
Tyers v Traralgon City
TYERS visited Traralgon City with the intent to stop City’s growing momentum.
An goal to Mark Fairbrother four minutes in put Tyers on the back foot but a quick reply from the head of Mark Pavich drew scores level.
John Koul scored to restore City’s lead but Tyers would not go away, scoring through Shayne Pavich to again even the ledger.
The high scoring half ended with a penalty awarded to City, which it converted to lead 3-2.
Liam Andersen made his City debut as a substitute in a tight second half.
Both sides created opportunities but neither could convert as City held on to win.
Churchill v Sale Utd
CHURCHILL United moved within a match of claiming back-to-back minor premierships with a narrow 1-0 win over Sale United on Sunday.
The Rams avenged a round six 2-0 loss to the Swans, their only defeat to date. The match was played from box to box with both defences firmly in control.
The Rams introduced Ben Skinner prior to half-time after Tim Dawson succumbed to a bout of flu.
The impressive young firebrand forced a ball into the box for striker Paul Riess who was clumsily fouled in a rare mistake from the Swans.
Riess stepped up to bury the resultant penalty to give Churchill the lead moments before the break.
Sale was thrown a life line in the second half when Churchill enforcer Mitch Jackson was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence.
The Swans pushed for an equaliser but were constantly repelled by the Rams’ rock solid defence, and the game ended 1-0.
Fortuna 60 v Newborough Yallourn
FORTUNA clung on to a spot in the top four with a 1-0 victory at home over NYU.
Fortuna created the better chances in a physical first half but a dogged NYU kept their more fancied opponents off the scoresheet to go to the interval nil all. The game opened up in the second half with chances breaking for both sides, but Lee Wilkinson ran a tight ship at the back to keep NYU out.
Thrice Fortuna put the ball in the back of the net only to be tormented by the linesman’s flag, before NYU was reduced to 10 men on 70 minutes.
Fortuna’s John McEvoy finally broke the deadlock when he slotted home a rebound from the top of the box three minutes from time.
NYU pushed hard for an equaliser and provided some tense moments from a series of set pieces, but could not hit the mark in a 1-0 loss.
Preview round 16
FALCONS head to Moe on Sunday looking to continue a purple patch of form against a side that sits second on the table.
With no injury concerns, Falcons will fancy a result against its powerhouse opponents, and will need to win to keep faint finals hopes alive.
Churchill v Olympians
THIS Saturday night Churchill travels to Traralgon to face the Olympians.
A win for the Rams will wrap up the club’s fifth league premiership in the last seven years. Olympians will be keen to upset the Rams, and a win would force Churchill to beat either Moe or Fortuna in the final two rounds to sew up the league title.
Traralgon City v Sale Utd
CITY travels to Sale in an attempt to go three in a row.
Sale is out to cement its position in the four and to reclaim some pride after losing to City earlier in the season.
NYU v Tyers
THE teams at the wrong end of the ladder will both be desperate to post points and avoid the wooden spoon.
With NYU four points clear of bottom side Tyers, this game shapes as Lightning’s last chance to make a move.
Fortuna v Monash
WITH Sale knocking on the door to the four, Monash and Fortuna have everything to play for at Crinigan Road South.
Monash (29) and Fortuna (28) are separated by a point in third and fourth respectively, with Sale looming in fifth on 27.