Arrive Alive Women?s Premier League Round 8 Review


The opportunity of an upset or two was on the cards but, when it came down to the business end of proceedings, the favoured sides put their best foot forward to grab the points.
At Lynwood Park the Macarthur Rams hosted the Illawarra Stingrays in a replay of last season?s Grand Final.
The Stingrays were down on personnel and The Rams were expected to take full advantage.  However, it was the visitor?s who took the lead in the 25th minute when Lee put the ball in the back of the net to break the first half deadlock.
Ten minutes later The Stingrays had doubled their lead when Talitha Kramer scored. Suddenly The Rams were up against it. Down 2-0 at half time Macarthur tried their best to revive their fortunes in the second half but Illawarra were not to be denied. At the end of the ninety minutes the defending premiers had maintained their unbeaten record and dented the hopes of one of their main rivals in the race for the title.
Illawarra have shown championship qualities in the absence of so many of their 1st grade players. It will take a big effort from their challengers to wrest the title from their grip.
Macarthur Rams will have been disappointed not to have been able to bring Illawarra down in their ?weakened? state. The Rams don?t appear the force they once were and they?ll need to lift considerably if they wish to resurrect their title credentials.
ILLAWARRA STINGRAYS 2 (K.Lee 25m, T.Kramer 35m)
In Bathurst, Inter Lions rode into town ready to do battle with the Western NSW Panthers.
The two sides went hard at each other with neither able to snare a significant advantage in the opening half. It was anyone?s game at the break with the 0-0 scoreline reflecting how tight the struggle had been.
The arm wrestle continued through the second half with both sides frustrated at their inability to score. Just when both coaches had thought they?d walk away with a share of the points who else but the Inter Lions Captain Catherine Cannuli worked her special brand of magic to score an 89th minute winner for the visitors.
Possibly Inter Coach should have been organising a limousine ride home for Cannuli who is taking on legend status with her deeds at Inter Lions.  The Lions now nudge their way into the top four with this gutsy win.
The Panthers strong start to the season is now floundering on successive losses. For the first time this season they have dropped outside the top four. Next week sees the Western NSW girls up against Macarthur Rams.
INTER LIONS                           1 (C.Cannuli 89m)
At Cromer Park Manly United maintained second spot on the competition table with a comprehensive 4-0 win over NWS Koalas.
With two goals in each half the Manly side were too strong for the visitors. Heidi Van Weeren opened the scoring for the locals in the 20th minute. This was backed up just 13 minutes later by Manly?s second goal scored by Bronte Bates.
The 2-0 half time lead was extended in the 75th minute by Liz Morrison before Bates rounded out the scoring with her second goal in the 87th minute.
The Koalas tried hard but, simply, weren?t good enough to match Manly United on the day. Manly sit just one point behind table topping Illawarra Stingrays and now have a six point break over third placed Macarthur Rams.
MANLY UNITED FC 4 (H.Van Weeren 20m, B.Bates 33m/87m, E.Morrison 75m)
NWS KOALAS          0
In Nowra Sydney University were out to show that their impressive performance against Marconi Stallions was no fluke when they met Southern Branch.
Southern Branch had come to play and Sydney University took 27 minutes to open their account through Erin Wilson. Any thoughts that the floodgates would then open were tempered though as the home team hung in gamely. The two teams went to oranges with Sydney University holding a 1-0 lead.
Nine minutes into the second half University?s Kate Trebilcock scored to double the visitor?s lead. Nine minutes later Trebilcock made it a brace before Hannah Kimber made it 4-0 in the 65th minute. Erin Wilson then rounded out the scoring with her second goal in the 75th minute to leave Southern Branch one the wrong end of a 5-0 scoreline.
Southern Branch put in a brave effort but couldn?t hold Sydney University in the second half. The University girls appear to be in the middle of a resurgence; one that will hopefully have them close enough to challenge for a top four spot by the time their long list of injured players return to the field.  Yes, it won?t be an easy task but Sydney University are on a roll with the lowly ranked Sutherland Sharks looming as their next victims.
SYDNEY UNIVERSITY 5 (E.Wilson 27m/75m, K.Trebilcock 54m/63m, H.Kimber 65m)
At Marconi Stadium the young Stallions were out to prove last week?s form against Sydney University wrong. However, they had a fight on their hands as Sutherland Sharks had obviously come to play.
Marconi made most of the running but their shooting was haphazard; wasting a number of opportunities. The Sharks kept battling away but, given their performances this season, one had to wonder if their first half heroics would be repeated after half time.
Marconi?s Emma Stanbury ended the stand off in the 53rd minute with a well taken goal. Liz O?Reilly added The Stallions?s second goal 11 minutes later before Helen Petinos gave the scoreboard attendant a final piece of work in the 72 minute to confirm a 3-0 Marconi win.
This was not a pretty performance by The Stallions but they got three points for it which I?m sure will help soothe any unease felt over the manner in which it was achieved. The Stallions stay in touch with the top four group, sitting one point behind fourth placed Inter Lions.
Sutherland, not for the first time this season, stayed with their opposition for 45 minutes but couldn?t finish it off. They?ll be hoping to stretch things that little bit further next weekend against Sydney University.
MARCONI STALLIONS  3 (E.Stanbury 53m, E.O?Reilly 64m, H.Petinos 72m)
Sydney served up a great day to be out watching the football. I hope that you got the opportunity to get to an Arrive Alive Women?s Premier League match and enjoyed the action. The talented players in the state?s premier women?s league will be back to entertain you next weekend.
See you at the ground.
-By Ross Anderson