Round 7 of the Women’s Super League saw all travelling teams pick up maximum points with some shock results to spice up the league.
As we approach the half waypoint for the season, there has been a real shake up on the ladder with St. George and Sydney Olympic both claiming shock wins against stiff opposition whilst Ayse Adalis stole the show at her old stomping ground, Lambert Park.
There is one thing for sure in the Women’s Super League, anything is possible if your confidence is high and you have lady luck is on your side.
APIA Leichhardt Tigers 1 – 5 Eastern UNSW Lions
A cold Sunday afternoon was treated to an absolute goal fest as APIA Leichhardt Tigers welcomed home their former star striker Ayse Adalis and her new team UNSW Lions to Lambert Park.
The home team started the better of the two sides with an early shot on goal thanks to Dani Calvi in just the fourth minute of the game however it wasn’t until the 21st minute that this fixture really came to life.
Thanks to some great build up play, it was Calvi who was weaving her magic walking the ball past three defenders before calmly slotting the ball home past UNSW Lions’ keeper Amanda Watson. The smile on Calvi’s face showed just how important that goal was for the home side who had been struggling in recent weeks.
The travelling supporters were left speechless just minutes before the break as UNSW Lions were awarded a free kick from 30 yards out. Former APIA striker Ayse Adalis stepped up with a stunning strike into the top corner of the goal to produce what could quite possibly be a contender for goal of the season.
With the scores level at 1-1 at the break, APIA knew that they needed to score early after the restart to get back into this game however with the midfield strength of UNSW, that was a tough task to achieve.
From outside the box and the outside of her boot, Ayse Adalis scored her second goal of the afternoon in the 50th minute. With a perfectly weighted ball over APIA’s tiring defence, Adalis scored a volley worthy of any Premier League or even W-League side. It was from this moment on that UNSW Lions really started to dominate proceedings.
APIA did manage to test Amanda Watson in goals with half an hour left to play. Again it was the fine striking partnership between Dani Calvi and Danielle Pritchard, forcing the Lions’ keeper into making a fantastic diving save to deny the Tigers a lifeline in this game.
By the 66th minute, Adalis had secured her hat trick. After a penetrating ball through APIA’s backline, Adalis was free to knock the ball into the back of the net. Despite being the easiest goal she had scored by that point, it was obvious how important it was for her to keep scoring goals against her old club.
With 15 minutes left to play, Adalis managed to knock in her fourth goal of the game. Claiming an assist was Ashley Rabie who provided a simple through ball for Adalis to tap into the back of the net.
Despite having a penalty saved with just minutes to go, Ayse Adalis scored the fifth and final goal for UNSW Lions in the 87th minute to complete a powerful performance against APIA Tigers.
It is hard to suggest that anyone other than Ayse Adalis will be challenging for the Golden Boot award come the end of the season after a brilliant start to the 2012 campaign. It is also evident that if Adalis continues her current form it won’t be long before W-League sides start calling her up for a spot in their squads.
With UNSW Lions facing a trip to Nowra next weekend to take on equal top placed Southern Branch, it was important to get all three points today at Lambert Park to help boost confidence and morale as we get closer to the half way point of the season. APIA are rumoured to be adding three very experienced players to their squad which could just be the kick start they need to get their season back on track, especially since next Sunday they face the daunting task of heading to Melita Stadium to take on the Parramatta Lady Hawks.
Parramatta Lady Hawks 1 – 2 Nepean FC
After a rough start to the season, Nepean claimed their first win of the year against some tough competition at Melita Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Lady Hawks came out fired up and ready for action with S. Lagudi scoring in the 22nd minute, however just as the saying goes, you’re always most venerable after you’ve just scored. Just two minutes later and L. Flowers found an equaliser for Nepean with A. Waddell claiming the winning goal in the 60th minute. This was a much needed win for Nepean which sees them lifted off the bottom of the ladder.
Western NSW Mariners 1 – 2 Southern Branch
Alec Lamberton Field has become a fortress for the Mariners this season thanks to some fantastic performances at home however for the former Premier League side Southern Branch, this was a game which they needed to get a win to stay at the top of the ladder. A goal in each half secured the win for Branch with the Mariners’ striker M. McFarland getting a consolation goal in the 87th minute.
Southern Districts 2 – 5 Sydney Olympic
In a must win game for both sides, the away team produced a stand out second half performance to get all three points. Districts walked into the break cautiously optimistic as they led 2-1 and had the stronger of the opportunities however a hat-trick to F. Hammoud was enough to wipe the smile of the Emerald’s faces.
Northern Tigers 0 – 2 St. George FC
Clearly the shock result of the round with premiership hopefuls Northern Tigers went down at home 2-0 to St. George FC. A double by Melissa Toumbelekis means that the travelling side jump up to fifth on the ladder on 10 points equal with Northern Tigers who are low on confidence and morale.
UNSW Lions continued their fine form with a solid 3-0 win over APIA Leichhardt Tigers at Lambert Park on Sunday afternoon. After being up by two at the break thanks to some poor defending by APIA, the Lions’ experienced squad had the ability to control the game and dictate play for the entire second half. There was no doubt that the stand out performance of the afternoon was Lions’ young centre back Jacqui Feros.
Parramatta Lady Hawks dominated at Melita Stadium against Nepean FC claiming a 4-0 win putting a smile on all the player’s faces. Southern Branch faced a long drive home after the trek out to Bathurst which saw them get all three points in a 4-3 win over Western NSW Mariners. Sydney Olympic were too strong for Southern Districts as they secured a 2-0 win whilst the points were shared between Northern Tigers and St. George in an entertaining 1-1 draw at Mills Park.
-By Peter Nowakowski