Northcote City hover dangerously near the automatic drop zone after failing to overcome a nine-man Hume City at ABD Stadium, losing 2-1.
Richmond SC 0 drew with Port Melbourne 0 at Kevin Bartlett Reserve
Port Melbourne and Richmond settled for a scoreless draw on Friday night.
A week after enduring the same scoreline against Bulleen last week, Port Melbourne continue to bore their way to survival in another rollercoaster season for Eric Vassiliadis’ men, while Richmond consolidate 12thspot either side of Bulleen in survival and Northcote in automatic relegation.
A few chances on goal to the likes of Kris Kioussis, Jake Barker-Daish and Adrian Zahra were exchanged between the sides in the first half to no avail.
The trend continued in the second half, when Alex Caniglia and Bryan Bran couldn’t make opportunities pay, while at the other end Shaun Kelly and Bonel Obradovic also suffered the same fate.
Bentleigh Greens 0 drew with Heidelberg United 0 at Kingston Heath Soccer Complex
At Kingston Heath on Saturday, Bentleigh Greens’ point was welcome relief after losing captain Wayne Wallace to a calf injury before the game, while Troy Ruthven was forced off before half time, surviving a barrage for forays forward from the Bergers.
A few efforts from Reuben Way and Kenny Athiu forced saves from Ryan Scott, who also did well to deny Sean Ellis’ curling free kick in the second period, along with numerous corner kicks that were batted away.
Chris Theodoridis’ night was much quieter, but was bailed out by Les Doumbalis in one instance in the second period via a goalline clearance from a corner.
Hume City 2 (Carley 14’, Cahill 55’) defeated Northcote City 1 (Crowley 56’) at ABD Stadium
The deadlock was broken at ABD Stadium when Craig Carley’s effort landed in the back of the net, after initially beating his man.
The game turned on its head when Chris Oldfield was given his marching orders for an off-the-ball altercation in the 50th minute, with the potential repercussions for that incident in terms of suspensions potentially forcing a nervous wait for Hume and its star custodian – Braedyn Crowley received a yellow card for his role in the incident.
But despite being a man down, the lead was doubled when Tom Cahill went on a mazy run and finished at the near the post with aplomb.
Prolific striker Braedyn Crowley then added another goal to his season tally to get back Northcote in the game at 2-1 moments later.
Matters got worse for Hume when Daniel Clark was sent off for a rash challenge on Cody Martindale in the 88th minute, but the home side were able to hold on and deny Northcote any vital points in their bid for survival.
Avondale FC 3 (Germano 5’ 30’ [p], Crazia 45’) defeated Bulleen Lions 2 (Nour 62’, Nishimoto 82’) at Knights Stadium
At Somers Street, Avondale FC continued their late-season form with a 3-2 win over Bulleen in a real tale of two halves.
It was the Jonatan Germano show early, chipping in a goal in just the fifth minute of the contest, before also converting a penalty for a handball to give the hosts a 2-0 lead after just half an hour.
Michele Crazia also added another goal to his tally in recent weeks before the break to make it 3-0 as both teams headed into the rooms.
The tide turned in the second half when Sami Nour showed his usual goalscoring threat to peg one back for his side, which jolted his side into action.
Taka Nishimoto then scored another for Bulleen in the 82nd minute to ensure the latter stages of the contest were nervous for Avondale, but the scores finished 3-2 to the hosts and ensure Bulleen still have a nervy battle to avoid relegation.
Melbourne Victory 0 defeated by Pascoe Vale 6 (Gasparis 10’ 36’ [p], van ‘t Schip 15’ 38’, Santili 78’, Youssef 91’) at Epping Stadium
A hapless Melbourne Victory were trounced 6-0 by Pascoe Vale, who kept their finals hopes alive in the process.
Marino Gasparis and Davey van ‘t Schip exchanged goals – two each – to propel Paco to a 4-0 lead by the break.
Luca Santilli then added an acrobatic goal of his own later in the second half, before Joseph Youssef added the sixth in extra time to seal the tennis-like scoreline.
With Pascoe Vale now on 34 points, just four behind Green Gully who have a game in hand when they play Oakleigh Cannons tomorrow, finals football is not yet out of the equation for the late-season bloomers.
South Melbourne 2 (Lujic 42’, Millar 84’) defeated Melbourne Knights 1 (McGarry 63’) at Lakeside Stadium
At Lakeside, South Melbourne denied Bentleigh the premiership for at least another week.
The deadlock was broken just before the break when Brad Norton’s cutback found Milos Lujic to finish home and edge close to yet another Golden Boot.
Damien Miskulin was sent off in the second half after two yellows to make the task more difficult for his side.
That didn’t deter the Knights, who were the second club in the weekend to score after going down to 10 men (Hume City did the same), when James McGarry’s free kick went under the wall and beat Nikola Roganovic in goals.
However, a header to Matt Millar restored the lead late and ensured Bentleigh have to wait a bit longer before their premier status is confirmed.
In an interesting parralel to their contest at Knights Stadium earlier this year that ended 5-2, all of Lujic, Millar and McGarry scored, while Miskulin also received his marching orders then.
Oakleigh Cannons 0 defeated by Green Gully 1 (Boland 36’) at Jack Edwards Reserve
Green Gully all but sealed their finals participation with a crucial away win to the in-form Oakleigh Cannons on Monday night in a happy homecoming for current Gully and former Oakleigh coach Arthur Papas.
Oakleigh would be ruing missed chances early when Dimi Hatzimouratis and Dusan Bosnjak had early chances that missed and were saved respectively.
It allowed FFA Cup hero Liam Boland to strike, his header giving the visitors the lead in the 36th minute.
The scoreline would stay that way but it wasn’t for a lack of goalscoring chances, with a George Lambadaridis shot saved, Hatziouratis denied again, and Goran Zoric also had a late effort parried away.
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