Match of the Round:
Maitland FC 5-1 New Lambton FC
Maitland kept the good times rolling, defeating a desperate New Lambton side 5-1 in a special Match of the Round for the club.
Maitland made it nine games unbeaten in their Brain Cancer Awareness match, putting another strong team performance and a major dent in New Lambton’s slim hopes of finals.
It was a tight contest between both sides for the majority of the match but the Magpies were able to capitalise on their chances and take home a crucial three points.
The match did not start in favour of New Lambton, with Amy Gosling opening the scoring with an own goal in the 30th minute off a Maitland corner.
The Magpies got third-time lucky to double their advantage in the 38th minute. Bronte Peel’s powerful strike at goal was denied by New Lambton’s goalkeeper Ally Boertje, who then also blocked Sophie Stapleford’s shot before Sophia Laurie hit the ball cleanly into the back of the net.
New Lambton fought their way back into the half when Tara Andrews scored in the 39th minute. Andrews linked up with fellow Newcastle Jets teammate Cass Davis to weave the ball around the Maitland defence to slice the ball into the bottom right-hand corner past goalkeeper Imogene Tomasone.
Maitland came out of the blocks in the second half a little sharper than their opponent and were able to reek the benefits early after play resumed.
Mercedes McNabb scored her 10th goal of the season with style, smashing the ball past Boertje and extending the Magpies' lead to 3-1.
The Magpies' captain Sophie Stapleford was able to put her name on the scoresheet after converting a penalty that was awarded for a handball in the box.
Maitland's persistence in defensive pressure gifted the side their fifth and final goal of the afternoon. The joint pressure of Amy Parkinson and Laurie won the ball back off New Lambton and allowed McNabb to whip the ball into the penalty box and onto the head of Keely Gawthorpe who knocked it into the goal.
The three points allows Maitland to secure their spot for the finals and keeps them in the race to be premiers. They sit just four points off league-leaders Broadmeadow Magic and two off Newcastle Olympic.
The Magpies will be looking to make it 10 matches unbeaten when they play bottom-of-the-table side Warners Bay this weekend.
Greg Lowe’s side needs to win all of their remaining games, with other results also going their way in order to reach the finals series. They remain in fifth but are nine points behind Charlestown Azzurri in fourth place.
New Lambton will face another tough task when they host second-place Newcastle Olympic this weekend.
Mid Coast FC 0-7 Newcastle Olympic FC
Mid Coast had no answers for a strong Newcastle Olympic side, being defeated 0-7 on Saturday afternoon.
After weeks of improvement, Mid Coast had an afternoon they would want to forget, making multiple errors and allowing Newcastle to dominate all areas of the park.
Olympic striker Jemma House continued her goal-scoring form scoring a hat-trick and taking her total goals in the competition for the season to 23.
House got the scoring started for Olympic in the sixth minute of the match, tapping in the scraps off a corner ball.
Brooke Summers doubled the lead when a shot from a corner dribbled past the Mid Coast defence and goalkeeper.
House slotted her second of the afternoon in the 28th minute after pinching the ball from Emilee Franklin and running half of the pitch past multiple Mid Coast players and slicing the ball narrowly into the bottom corner.
Things went from bad to worse for Mid Coast when Olympic were awarded a penalty after Marissa Masterantonio pushed Sophie McDonald inside the box in the 34th minute. Zoe Horgan converted the penalty to extend Olympic’s lead to 4-0 leading into half-time.
The party continued for Olympic in the second half, with House using her pace once again to complete her hat-trick in the 51st minute.
Alesha Clifford headed her side 6 clear, knocking the ball into the back of the net off a free kick.
Laura Hall put the game to bed in the 80th minute, tracking down a well-placed through ball from Jacinta Johnston, closing out the scoring for her side at 7-0.
Mid Coast remains seventh on the table with one win in their last five games. Emma Stanbury will be eager for her side to finish the season on a high and pick up as many points as they can in their four remaining games.
The three points proved vital for Olympic, as they stay in the race to be premiers. They remain second on the table, two points behind Broadmeadow Magic, who they will face in this weekend’s Match of the Round.
Adamstown Rosebud JFC 1-4 Broadmeadow Magic FC
Adamstown were unable to stop league-leaders Broadmeadow Magic, going down 1-4 on Saturday evening.
Maddison Dean opened the scoring for Magic in the sixth minute. Jannai Hunter won the ball for Lucy Jerram to sprint down the line and cross the ball into Adranna Konjarski, who passed the ball to Dean who struck the back of the net.
Rosebud put up a good fight with Magic in the first half holding them to 1-0 but let things slip away from them in the second 45 minutes.
Kirstyn Pearce got her name on the scoresheet, heading home a spectacular ball off a corner kick.
Things kept going against Adamstown when Tara Cousins scored an own goal from a cross to put Magic 3-0 up.
But Rosebud were able to claw one back in stoppage time, when Courtney Anderson sliced the ball into the left bottom corner of the net.
But the competition's leading goal scorer Konjarski put the nail in the coffin for Magic, scoring her 29th goal this season.
Despite a positive start to the season, a poor run has seen Adamstown fall down the table into sixth and are now 11 points outside the top four teams. Ryan Campbell will be eager for his side to
Magic maintains their two-point lead at the top of the table but have Newcastle Olympic and Maitland closely behind hunting down the top spot.
Charlestown Azzurri FC 7-0 Warners Bay FC
Charlestown were able to turn things around in a big way defeating Warners Bay 7-0 on Sunday afternoon.
Azzurri helped cement their finals spot in a dominant performance over the struggling Panthers.
Cassie Corder was a standout for the Blues, scoring five goals, with four of them being in the first half.
Lori Depxynski opened the scoring for Azzurri in the sixth minute of the match, rolling her defender and striking the ball into the bottom corner of the net.
In the 11th minute, Corder tapped her first of the afternoon into the goal after Warners Bay goalkeeper Georgia Cooksey spilled the ball lose when making a save.
In the 26th minute Corder was there to capitalise on the scraps of the Warners Bay defenders to take the score to 3-0.
Corder scored her hattrick in the 43rd minute lunging to knock the ball into the back of the net.
Corder struck again in the 44th minute, tracking down a well-placed through ball before weaving past her defenders and curling the ball into the goal.
The goal flow slowed down in the second half, with Azzurri only netting two more goals.
Azzurri’s Jorja Brown was rewarded for all of her work in the midfield, launching the ball past Cooksey in goals to score her second goal of the season.
In the 72nd minute, Azzurri’s Evie Horgan took a quick free kick from halfway that reached Lilly-Jane Babic who passed the ball to Corder to strike the ball home, putting the cherry on top for the Blues.
Azzurri will be looking to continue the winning momentum when they host Mid Coast this weekend.
Warner Bay continues to struggle to get off the mark this season, sitting on zero points at the bottom of the table. The Panthers will have another tough task to face, going up against Maitland FC who are unbeaten in their last nine games.