SELECT Futsal Premier League round 6 Saturday matches saw UTS Northside down Mountain Majik 5-3, Inner West Magic beat Eastern Suburbs Hakoah 3-0, Campbelltown Quake pipped Dural Warriors 1-0, and Enfield Allstars edged Mascot Vipers 3-2.
Magic (16 points) are now outright competition leaders but still have UTS (15), Majik (13) and Campbelltown (10) riding their tails before a gap back to fifth-placed Easts (6), Dural (4), Enfield (3) and Mascot (2).
A brace from Majik weapon Crofts took her to the scorers-chart summit with a dozen goals (three hat-tricks and a double to date), two ahead of Hakoah’s Tamires Souza.
Mountain Majik 3 (Tanya Borazio, Ashlie Crofts 2) UTS Northside 5 (Genevieve Tucker 3, Sarah Roger, Maddison Zahra)
Inner West Magic 3 (Amy Dahdah, Rhianna Pollicina, Tori Tumeth) Eastern Suburbs Hakoah 0
Dural Warriors 0 Campbelltown Quake 1 (Mel Walsh)
Mascot Vipers 2 (Natasha Aitken, Georgia Plessas) Enfield Allstars 3 (Fabiana Perfilio, Jo-Anne Saliba, Zoe Zaczek)
Northside down Mountain
UTS Northside leapfrogged Mountain Majik into second spot on the ladder following a freestyle 5-3 win at sweaty Hawkesbury Indoor Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
It didn’t take long for the top-three affair to heat up as Majik’s Tanya Borazio and UTS’ Genevieve Tucker traded barbs in just the second-minute of game-play, an Ashlie Crofts one-minute double lifting the Mountaineers 3-1 up on the quarter-hour mark before Tucker snapped one back and Maddison Zahra leveled the scores for Northside on the stroke of halftime.
The second term was much the same as both sides went at each other, but it remained 3-3 until 10 minutes to go when Tucker snuck in her third score of the match to put UTS in front, and Sarah Roger iced the cake a few minutes later to dish up a delicious 5-3 victory – Northside’s fifth straight ‘W’.
This writer has dealt with several foxes over the years and the nature of UTS’ win stripped coach Danny Beauchamp of his hen-house disguise. Still, he divulged little… beside a few ‘green’ feathers protruding from his snout.
“[Actually] it was a pretty poor-quality game from both sides,” he said. “It was tough conditions in the heat.”
“We made some unforced errors in the first half and did enough to grind out the win, but it wasn’t pretty. Well done to Gen Tucker and Grace Arnold who really stood up in the second half.”
Mountain’s first loss of the summer left its own stain but an unsightly 19 goals conceded so far would most worry coach Adam Barbera, despite the team also registering a league-high 25 goals.
Majik’s lowest return of the summer so far has been two goals (to put that in perspective Dural’s highest score has been two); if the green machine can bolster its defence it’ll be hard to separate the top-three come finals time.
“I’m disappointed with an out-of-character performance from the girls,” Barbera said.
“The game itself was frustrating and due to the hot conditions neither team could really get into top gear.
“Unfortunately we couldn’t play the high-tempo aggressive Futsal that has seen us be successful in the early part of the season; but credit to UTS, they’re a very disciplined side structurally, punished our mistakes and didn’t allow us to create as many attacking opportunities as we would’ve liked.
“We’re still in a great position on the table and know we will learn from these mistakes. This result was definitely a little eye-opener for myself and the squad, but the belief within the team is still as high as ever and we look forward to bouncing back next week.”
Magic beat Hakoah
Inner West Magic claimed outright first place on the ladder with a slick 3-0 shutout of talent-laden Eastern Suburbs Hakoah at Valentine Sports Park on Saturday evening.
While it wasn’t all one-way traffic Inner West drove at a quicker pace across the board as an Amy Dahdah speculator fuelled by Rhianna Pollicina and Tori Tumeth goals, plus a fourth clean-sheet (from six starts), lifted Magic clear of the gridlock behind them.
It’s been a startling summer opening and considering unbeaten Inner West’s final game to round out the first half of the season is against win-less Mascot the question has to be asked – who’s good enough to beat them?
Magic coach Matteo Maiorana was barely crowing, but his crest shone brightly in the morning sun.
“It was an OK performance, and anytime you play OK and still win is a good day. Another clean sheet was an added bonus,” he said.
“Soph [Magus] every game continues to show why she’s the comps best goalkeeper, and Amy Dahdah, wow what a goal! Absolutely ridiculous!”
“Hakoah are a good side but we did enough. I’m happy the way the side is going; we blooded another 15-year-old in Olivia Schembri who didn’t look out of a place. We are in a good place at the moment.”
Campbelltown defeat Dural
A clinical Mel Walsh finish two minutes from fulltime finally separated Campbelltown Quake from Dural Warriors 1-0 at The Centre Dural on Saturday night.
It was 0-0 all the way in a dogged fight where the goalkeepers were the stars, Erin Brennan for Quake and Sarah Easthope for Warriors keeping the contest open by pulling off a series of remarkable saves each.
With the clock ticking toward a nil-all result, a pin-point Antonia Sharp pass to a breaking Darcey Malone saw the ball calmly slotted back-stick to Mel Walsh who sealed the game for Campbelltown.
Back-to-back wins jumped Quake to clear fourth spot, six points off leaders Inner West but a long way ahead of the hapless Warriors, who’ve now been held scoreless in three of their last four outings.
Campbelltown coach Mel Keith called the game a battle of defenses that saw both keepers make crucial saves.
“It’s not very often in the modern game I can say that Quake women’s have beaten Dural and although they were sporting a very young side I’m proud of our team and our younger girls who and stood up to match it with a team who has been a powerhouse for years and plays quality Futsal,” she said.
“We are continuing to be defensively strong and composed while creating a solid foundation in attacking play.
“It’s another step in the right direction and good for the confidence coming up against a strong Mountain Majik side next week.”
Warriors coach and a superstar with the gloves. Tani Rosekelly has been relying heavily on the club’s to prop up senior numbers in a tough start to the summer.
“We lost a lot of our depth and strike-power prior to the season starting with captain Rachel Perrins heading off overseas, Sam Nagy out with a knee injury/surgery, Bethany Gordon playing football overseas/W-league, Brooke Steinwede suffered an ACL tear in her final weeks of the football season and Demelza Howard has also taken a break for personal reasons,” she said.
“The court players remaining that have been in the culture of the women’s team are Tess Olsen, Bianca Dobson, Emma Hurley, and I can’t question their effort!
“They’ve stayed positive through the whole process and are working tirelessly to help mentor the less-experienced younger players step into women’s Futsal.
“We’re making silly mistakes through lack of experience at this level. I’ve got some fantastic young girls with loads of ability and potential, but the decision-making and execution is letting us down at times,” Rosekelly said.
“In terms of goalkeepers though I have been extremely happy with Bri [Clarke] in her first women’s season and the return of Sarah Easthope against Quake really breathed some strong morale into the group.
“[Easthope] brings a wealth of positive leadership and I’m excited to see how that flows on in the weeks to come. We shared duties for a few years and I’m seeing her really fill my shoes, as does Bri!
“We just have to keep working on the fundamental and continue to rebuild our foundations. I can only ask so much of the 15s and 17s, but if they continue to work on their weaknesses and apply 100% effort for the shirt each week I’m sure we’ll be able to pull back some results in the back half of the season.
“We’re definitely our own worst enemy at the moment by giving other teams too many easy opportunities and we have been punished for it.”
Enfield edge Mascot
Enfield Allstars blasted off the bottom of the table with a stirring 3-2 Saturday night win against Mascot Vipers at All Sorts Indoor Sports Centre.
The teams languished at the competition tail heading into the fixture but their position only told half the story as several gut-wrenching one-goal defeats to both sides had obviously dented their pre-season confidence.
And it seemed inevitable heartbreak would continue for one side as Enfield held onto a slender 2-1 lead at the changeover, and a goal each in a frantic second period saw Allstars shoot over Mascot on the table – both teams now having lost by a solitary goal in three of their six runs.
Fabiana Perfilio, Jo-Anne Saliba and Zoe Zaczek scored for Allstars, while Natasha Aitken and Georgia Plessas netted for Vipers.
Next week’s games
SELECT Futsal Premier League round-7 Saturday matches has Campbelltown Quake against Mountain Majik at Minto Indoor Sports Centre (3.50pm), Dural Warriors welcome Eastern Suburbs Hakoah at The Centre (5.50pm), Enfield Allstars face UTS Northside at Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre (7.05pm), and Mascot Vipers host Inner West Magic at All Sorts Indoor Sports Centre (7.50pm).
-By Dan De Nardi