The curtain has come down in the Football NSW League One Women’s competition and UNSW FC can take their bow as 2023 Premiers.
Round 27 had plenty of action to enjoy across the weekend which was highlighted by the Match of the Round between UNSW FC and Blacktown City FC.
Let’s get onto the review.
Match of the Round: UNSW FC vs Blacktown City FC
UNSW FC celebrated their Premiership with a 4-0 win over Blacktown City FC at The Village Green on Sunday afternoon.
The students had four different goal scorers in the game which had a celebratory atmosphere after being crowned on Saturday afternoon. Marcella Santos scored from the spot to make it 1-0 at the break then Taylor Galea, Hayley Marshall and Margaux Montegut rounded off the display in the second half.
Blacktown City FC battled hard in what has been a tough but improving campaign for the side in their second year of League One Women’s. Their best chances fell to Jenny Hughes and Rachel Chalhoub in either half.
Both UNSW FC and Blacktown City FC entered The Village Green pitch on a celebratory afternoon for the hosts and with both sides looking to end the season on a high.
The first shot of the game was for the students. Marcella Santos wriggled free from her marker and fired a shot straight at Blacktown City FC keeper Kiara Rochaix.
Blacktown City FC had a chance to respond from the set piece. Rachel Chalhoub floated in a free kick which had to be claimed bravely by UNSW FC keeper Tiahna Robertson.
UNSW FC kept piling on the pressure looking for the opener. Sarah Ferris had a header saved then Hannah Beard’s snapshot went right to Rochaix.
Santos then had a pair of chances to put UNSW FC ahead. Her header from Cassandra Christopher’s cross fizzed wide then her shot went right to Rochaix.
The hosts eventually found the opener in the 40th minute. Santos was fouled in the box and the striker dusted herself off to rocket it home for 1-0 for UNSW FC.
Beard almost doubled the delight for UNSW FC before the break. She glided past defenders before hammering her effort into the side netting.
Coming out of the break, UNSW FC felt just fine. Amanda Levaskevich almost prodded the ball past Rochaix but her effort went straight.
UNSW FC made it 2-0 soon enough. Taylor Galea had the ball break to her and she fired home to make it double delight for the students in the 53rd minute.
Before the celebrations had died down, UNSW FC made it 3-0. A slick move for the students which saw Hayley Marshall tuck the ball home in the 54th minute.
UNSW FC were in party mode and looked to put icing on the cake. They had a series of corners which were sent in dangerously but dealt with by Blacktown City FC.
The students felt like they were in a woodworking class with hitting the woodwork three times in succession. Substitute Hannah Charak hit the post while Margaux Montegut and Hayley Marshall hit the crossbar.
Blacktown City FC tried until the final whistle. Their top scorer Jenny Hughes used her body well to evade the defender and hit one at Robertson.
UNSW FC added a fourth in the 87th minute. Montegut was fouled inside the box and earned the penalty. She dusted herself off to slot it home to make it 4-0.
Speaking post-match, UNSW FC coach Guillermo Rubio was delighted with the effort from the club after their hard work all season:
“We knew we had the job done but wanted to finish it off properly. Four different scorers, it has been a great season for us in both grades. I think it was deserved and we were pushed hard by Mariners throughout the season. I remember when I arrived, we have converted the team since then and proud of the girls commitment.” said Rubio.
For Blacktown City FC coach David O’Keefe, he reflected on the season from his young squad and what needs to be improved for 2024:
“I think it was expected this result. I thought we were competitive in the first half but in the second half they punished us. I don’t think we worked hard enough in the game. We were more competitive this season, played better football and were only outclassed a few times including today. Our main thing was not scoring goals but we’re looking to fix that next year. The whole club is trending in the right direction after the first two years.” said O’Keefe.
Sunday 3 September 2023
The Village Green
Referee: Ivica Covic
Assistant Referees: Simon Burchett & Laureano Villarreol
UNSW FC 4 (Santos ‘40, Galea ‘53, Marshall ‘54, Montegut ‘87)
Blacktown City FC 0
UNSW FC: 1. Tiahna Robertson, 2. Sarah Ferris (35. Alessia Dal Pane ‘64), 7. Amanda Levaskevich, 9. Hayley Marshall (6. Miranda Summersby-Mitchell ‘58), 11. Marcella Santos (10. Hannah Charak ‘45), 14. Jess Mullins, 16. Rachelle Wang, 20. Cassandra Christopher, 22. Hannah Beard (34. Isabella Stinizani ‘73), 30. Taylor Galea (40. Stephanie Tour ‘64), 33. Margaux Montegut
Unused subs: 21. Akala Howell
Yellow cards: Levaskevich ‘40
Red cards: nil
Blacktown City FC: 1. Kiara Rochaix, 2. Ainsley Byrne, 3. Ashleigh Bax (5. Lexy Thorpe ‘70), 4. Rachel Chalhoub (38. Olivia Moar ‘70), 7. Claire Szymoniczek (6. Danielle Keller ‘30), 9. Alyse-May McCutcheon (15. Yasmin Aloisio ‘56), 11. Jenny Hughes, 12. Ashley Limnios (17. Nicola Ciocca ‘56), 16. Olivia De Pourbaix, 19. Emma Ingerson, 26. Samantha Cole
Unused subs: 20. Anna Ivanovic
Yellow cards: nil
Red cards: nil
South Coast Flame FC 1 defeated Central Coast Mariners FC 0
South Coast Flame FC finished off the season with a 1-0 win over Central Coast Mariners at Elizabeth Park on Saturday afternoon.
The result meant that Central Coast Mariners had their title hopes extinguished with back-to-back losses this week. Coming into the game, Mariners knew they needed a win and that showed in a first half where the two sides cancelled each other out and went to the break at 0-0.
After which, both teams threw everything they had at each other in search of the three points. It was a heartbreaker for the Mariners as they conceded an 89th minute goal. Bronte Trew wrapped up her Golden Boot campaign with her 29th of the season as South Coast Flame FC end the season with seven straight wins.
Inter Lions 4 defeated by South East Phoenix FC 5
South East Phoenix FC edged a thriller 5-4 against Inter Lions down at Majors Bay Reserve on Sunday afternoon.
The Lions had the perfect start when Isabel McBride scored in the 19th minute for 1-0. That set up an explosion of goals which saw the teams go into the break at 3-3. An own goal equalised for Phoenix before youngster April Rowley gave the visitors the lead.
Inter Lions had a quickfire double from Riley Dennis which made it six goals in the first half. The second half was a sedate encounter in comparison. Rowley handed Phoenix back the lead in 56th before Madison Cater made it 5-4 in the 65th minute. Dennis completed her hat-trick in 72nd minute which set up a grandstand finish.
South East Phoenix FC were able to see out the rest of the game and pick up three points to end their season on a high. Inter Lions battled hard and had some joy in finding the back of the net despite not taking anything from the contest.
Camden Tigers 2 drew with Nepean FC 2
Both Camden Tigers and Nepean FC ended their season with a 2-2 draw at Ron Dine Reserve on Sunday afternoon.
It was a good way to sign off for both Camden Tigers and Nepean FC who had contrasting seasons and look forward to 2024. The Tigers struck first through Samantha Cefai in the 20th minute and led 1-0 at the half-time break.
The game kicked into high gear in the second half. Nepean FC equalised through Gemma Morgan right on the hour mark then completed the turnaround through Ella Joyce in the 73rd minute. There was one twist left and Tigers snatched a dramatic equaliser through Ashlee Taff in the 95th mintue for a fighting point.
Sutherland Shire FA 0 defeated by SD Raiders FC 1
SD Raiders FC signed off the 2023 season with a 1-0 win over Sutherland Shire FA at Kareela Oval #3 on Sunday afternoon.
Fresh from their mid-week upset win against Central Coast Mariners, the visitors were keen to finish the season with three wins on the bounce. Their goal came early in the contest through Isabella Sultan who scored in the 7th minute for 1-0.
The second half was a grind between two sides that endured up and down League One Women’s campaigns. SD Raiders FC will finish in the top half while Sutherland Shire FA had a promising start but fell away throughout the year.
Marconi Stallions 1 drew with St George FC 1
The points were shared in a 1-1 draw between Marconi Stallions and St George FC at Marconi Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
St George FC finished off their regular season adding another point to their tally and confirming their return to the finals in fourth spot. The Saints were the first to find the back of the net through Jaslyn Moore for her sixth goal of the campaign.
The Stallions who confirmed Michael Beauchamp as their manager for next season, wanted to go out on top for current coach Andy Severin. They got an equaliser in spectacular fashion through Erinn Cleghorn who chipped Amy Orphanides from 40 yards for a 1-1 draw.
Hills United FC 1 defeated Mt Druitt Town Rangers 0
Hills United FC warmed up for the finals with a 1-0 win over Mt Druitt Town Rangers at Bella Vista Public School on Sunday afternoon.
The result confirms third spot for Hills United FC which sees them travel to Central Coast Mariners for their semi-final next weekend. It was a battling first half between the two Western Sydney rivals which saw them go to the break at 0-0.
Hills United FC were able to unlock the Mt Druitt defence in the second half. Juri Hiragawara found the back of the net in the 66th minute to make it 1-0. The hosts saw out the rest of the game which was a 15th clean sheet for Sarah Easthope in 2023.
By Justin Davies (@JustDavies90)