LVSL campaign as tight as ever so far

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WITH one more round until the halfway point, it is anyone’s guess as to who will be lifting the league championship trophy, as only four points separate the top five sides in what is shaping to be one of the closest campaigns on record.

We start our Round 10 wrap up with the match of the round between two Morwell rivals.


Pegasus v Fortuna 60 (final score 2-1)

IN one of the most anticipated games to date, Morwell Pegasus and Fortuna battled it out behind closed doors at Ronald Reserve.

The build-up to the match was somewhat unconventional, as the Latrobe Valley Soccer League issued a directive that saw no fans in attendance due to an indiscretion by the home side three weeks ago.

With the matter now closed, it was onto the football, albeit in strange circumstances, but a fantastic game ensued regardless.

Fortuna got off to the perfect start by taking the lead as defender Alex Bowman, returning after a five-week suspension, headed home after only three minutes.

Before you could blink it was one-all as Germaine Otieno equalised with his 10th goal of the season to restore parity.

The Flying Horsemen started to dictate the contest after halftime, and they would be rewarded for their dominance as Bowman went from hero to zero as he brought down a Pegasus player inside the box, with Otieno making it a brace on the day.

Pegasus had many an opportunity to kill the game off but couldn’t do so, which opened the door for their opponent to throw everything at them to find an equaliser.

The Orangemen have proven to be a quality side this year, and they had three glorious opportunities to find a leveller, with the closest being a shot that rattled the crossbar.

Unfortunately it was not to be, as Pegasus took all three points which sees them only two points off the summit.

Fortuna have only six days to recover when they face another Morwell rival in Falcons 2000.


Falcons 2000 v Sale United (4-0)

AFTER a string of away games, Falcons returned home on Saturday night against an in-form Sale side that had held Pegasus to a two-all draw last week.

With both sides matching results with the Flying Horsemen in successive rounds, many thought Sale would be a fighting chance to snatch a result.

But the boys in blue had other ideas.

The home side seem to have found their rhythm once again, and they were at their destructive best as they dismantled the away team with ease in the first half.

They had the perfect chance to take the lead when Nonda Lazaris was fouled in the box, but Jamie Pistrin failed to convert, however it wouldn’t be long until they took the lead.

Striker Michael Fava put his side in front with a volley inside the box from a corner, and a second goal came soon after as wonderful build up play by Falcons resulted in a parried Fava shot being converted by Lazaris.

The goal of the night would make it three as a Lazaris thunderbolt from 25 yards out went in off the crossbar.

The Birds controlled the second half, and at the death they made it four goals as a brilliant cross from Josh Patterson was finished by Lazaris to make it a memorable night for the youngster as he claimed a hat-trick.

The reigning league champions seem to be back to their best and the win sees them move up to top spot.


Monash Wolves vs Traralgon Olympians (2-1)

MONASH didn’t do itself any favours on Sunday, as it laboured to a win against eighth-placed Olympians.

Chris Oulton and Ethan Lawrence would each hit the back of the net, and the win sees the Wolves solidify seventh place on the ladder, only a point behind Sale.

The loss for Olympians sees them stay in eighth spot.



MOE United bounced back from their shock loss to Monash last round, with an 11-0 demolition of Churchill in Round 10 of the Latrobe Valley Soccer League.

Taking to Olympic Park last Sunday, the Red Devils were in no mood for another upset defeat, and in the space of 20 minutes, had raced to a 3-0 lead.

Matt Shearing owned the scoring when he slotted home a cross from Riley Winkleman.

Moe’s second goal came from a succession of clinical passes from Winkleman, Brendan Ruddell and Shearing, which saw Ruddell find Connor O’Hanlon unmarked, and he made no mistake from close range.

Winkleman was unlucky not to score when his cracking shot hit the crossbar and rebounded safely.

O’Hanlon scored his second in a matter of minutes, when he cooly slotted home a cross from Shearing.

Another United attack saw Winkleman fouled just outside the box, and Ruddell unleashed a piledriver shot to give the keeper no chance.

Connor Dastey made it 5-0 when he made a sustained run down the right, then from an acute angle, got it past the Churchill keeper.

Ruddell was again involved when his long pinpoint pass was placed home by Chad Shelley for his first goal in Red Devils colours.

Just before the break, a run from deep in defence saw Tanner Pyle dance his way past four Churchill players before his one-two with Winkleman saw his one-on-one with the advancing keeper lead to him placing the ball calmly into the back of the net.

At halftime, Moe led 7-0.

The second half saw a more competitive Churchill withstand a Moe barrage until the 65th minute when a Connor Dastey cross saw O’Hanlon miss the simple opportunity, but Luke Bathgate was quick to seize on the loose ball and put Moe 8-0 up.

O’Hanlon was again in the play, which saw his perfect pass find fellow striker Winkleman, who converted the chance.

Shortly after, a well-taken corner kick by Noah Kane found midfield maestro Oscar Sceney, who slotted the opportunity.

Winkleman rounded off a superb team display when his first-time shot after a Campbell Dastey cross got another one home.

Moe’s best were Pyle, Sceney, Shelley and Winkleman.



Falcons 2000 v Fortuna 60 (Saturday 6pm)

WELL, what a game we have on our hands here.

There has been many big games this year, but I think all agree that this is the biggest to date.

Two arch-rivals, separated by a couple of hundred metres geographically and by a single point on the ladder, going head-to-head in a game that will have significant repercussions in the league title race.

A Fortuna win will see them leapfrog their rivals, but a win for the Birds would see them move four points clear of their crosstown combatants, which they cannot afford to transpire.

A massive crowd is expected on Saturday night in what is sure to be a quality football match.

Fortuna are at full strength while Falcons have three unavailable players, but regardless of who takes the field, both will be giving it their all in the match of the round.


Traralgon Olympians v Churchill Rams (Sunday 3pm)

ANOTHER opportunity presents itself for Churchill to claim its first points of the campaign this weekend against an Olympians side that has won just the one game thus far.

After their heavy loss to Moe, and being the proud club that they are, nothing less than 100 per cent effort will be expected.


Moe United v Newborough/Yallourn (Sunday 3pm)

ANOTHER postcode derby, in a game that will have a bearing on positions at the top end of the table.

Moe will head into the game as favourites but the Combine know that anything less than three points may result in them being left behind in the title race.


Tyers Lightning v Morwell Pegasus (Sunday 3pm)

THINGS have gotten tough for Tyers of late, and their challenge doesn’t get any easier as they face a Pegasus side in red-hot form, especially after their morale boosting win against Fortuna on Sunday.

The Flying Horsemen are expected to take all three points, but look for Tyers to make it difficult for them.