Rivalry round review
Churchill v Moe
MOE’S visit to Churchill resulted in one of the most entertaining games in Gippsland Soccer League memory, with 10 goals scored in a frenetic contest.
The 5-5 draw in the senior game started in spectacular fashion as the Red Devils went 2-0 up within seven minutes.
The first came through Kev O’Farrell, who won a scramble on the goal line, and the second moments later went to Matt Shearing when he rounded the keeper for his first of three.
The fairytale start quickly collapsed as Churchill levelled with two goals from set pieces 25 minutes into the game.
Shearing added his second before the break to send Moe 3-2 up at half-time.
The second half saw Churchill again equalise 3-3 but Moe found a way to draw ahead when Shearing completed his hat-trick to make it 4-3.
The plot thickened when the Rams hit back immediately to go 4-4 with 20 minutes still to play.
When Joel Baldwin blasted home from 25 yards to put Moe up 5-4 on 85 minutes the game looked over, but Churchill, as it had done all day, found a reply to force an incredible 5-5 draw.
Churchill now leads the league by a single point from this week’s opponent Sale.
Falcons v Tyers
IN a repeat of its midweek Battle of Britain cup game, Falcons travelled to Tyers looking to get back on track in the league after going three games without a win.
In a testament to the newly found depth at Falcons, a myriad of changes were made to the first team squad which showed no ill effect for the shake up.
The visitor made a perfect start when Jesse Kennedy scored within 10 minutes of the opening whistle, but Tyers soon equalised via a set piece.
However the Birds continued on their merry way as Kennedy completed a first half hat-trick and, along with a Manny Tombra finish, put Falcons up 4-1 at the break.
The second half was a procession as Daniel Edey helped himself to four goals, along with further strikes to DJ Matar, Scott Mackeown, Kennedy and Tombra to round out a resounding 12-1 win.
Falcons’ increase in goal difference was enough to see the side creep ahead of arch rivals Fortuna into fourth position on the ladder.
Pegasus v Fortuna
The Morwell derby saw Fortuna play away to Pegasus looking to recover after a loss to Moe last round.
Right from the start of the game Pegasus imposed a physical style of soccer on the visitor.
On the large Ronald Reserve Fortuna used the space out wide, sending the ball into the 18 yard several times in the early stages, but Pegasus’ hard defence was holding well.
Ten minutes in a long drive from the wing saw the ball crossed in to find the head of Matt Ross who was on target.
Pegasus keeper Leon Cook got hands to the ball and pushed it into the pack in front of goal where Josh Tanti put it away for Fortuna’s first.
After the half-time break Fortuna dropped the ball and Pegasus found a goal to level; Alradi Ismail danced through the defence and squared for Salah Eliaser to make it 1-1.
A low long range thunderbolt from Heydan Cook was denied only by the post as Pegasus threatened an upset.
However, Fortuna stepped up and scored through a long run from the backline Kenny Higgins at the 65-minute mark to make it 2-1.
Fortuna’s winner came from some great passing through the centre which found the running Mauro De Luca, who neatly finished 80 minutes in for Fortuna’s third. Fortuna host Monash this weekend for the Pink Ribbon Day games in support of breast cancer research.
Monash v NYU
MONASH once again claimed bragging rights in the Borough derby by comprehensively defeating Newborough Yallourn United 4-0.
It took just five minutes for Monash to open its account.
Tom Bramstedt directed a quick free kick into the path of Marcus Krznaric, who lashed his shot across the keeper into the net.
The lead was doubled soon after when the in-form Ethan Lawrence swept the ball home for his fifth of the campaign.
NYU fielded new recruit Mark Fairbrother, following his midweek move from Traralgon City, but he was given a torrid time by Varesanovic in the Monash defence and unable to fashion any chances in his new colours.
It was a former NYU player who increased the lead for the Wolves on the half hour; Brendan Ruddell unleashed a 20-yard scorcher into the top of the net for his first goal in the yellow and black.
Minutes into the second half Lawrence added his second with a clinical header on the far post after Isaac Abas crossed from the right.
Monash controlled the midfield with Chad Shelley again putting in a commanding performance in the middle of the park alongside Bramstedt and Shawn Lawrence, who all had attempts on goal as the visitor began to tire.
Jayden Mathison had the best chance for the Combine, but his free header from directly in front was sent wide of the upright.
It was Mathison’s brother Justin in goal that kept the scoreline respectable, saving well from Lawrence late on as the striker searched for his hat-trick.
Traralgon City v Olympians
WITH pride on the line for both clubs the battle for the Traralgon Cup between City and Olympians was always going to be a tough test.
City controlled the play from the start and within 10 minutes young James Sykes drove a great shot past the keeper to go 1-0 up.
Speedy striker Dau Mayen began to utilise his pace and, with the Roosters controlling the game, put the ball in the net twice by half-time to make it 3-0 at the break.
The second half saw Olympians step the pace up but the fitness of City came to the fore.
Olympians goalkeeper Ben Johnstone took a knock and was forced from the field, before City veteran Rob Spiers finished the game off with great goal.
The 4-0 win kept the Roosters in the top six, one point ahead of Monash.
Battle of Britain
Traralgon Olympians lt Morwell Pegasus 0-3
Falcons 2000 d Tyers SC 5-0