The regular season is over and APIA Leichhardt Tigers have been crowned Premiers after a furious round of action which featured twenty goals.
Match of the Round: St George FC 6 defeated UNSW Lions 1
St George FC signed off the season in style with a goal bonanza to thump UNSW Lions 6-1 at David Phillips Field.
It was a much changed team from the Lions with injuries and ineligibility hurting them but the home side got off to the perfect start.
From a corner, Luisa Marzotto broke away from her defender and fired a bullet header home for the 1-nil lead.
The visitors sparked into action by the goal, stated working the ball around well and found much joy in exploiting the UNSW Lions centre backs.
Lily Chen had a field day and got the first goal for the Saints. Loren Sutherland found her with a delightful through ball and Chen slotted home to level it.
She was once again found in space this time from Marissa Nicopoulos. The vibrant forward found her strike partner to unleash a vicious volley into the net and give Saints a shock lead.
The first half rained goals as now St George FC had found their rhythm and were playing confidently around the Lions.
Amy Bennett linked well with Jessica Carosi for the latter to slide her effort into the net in a goalrush from the visitors.
Chen completed her hat-trick just before the break with a nice move started by Carosi was finished with aplomb by the winger as St George headed into the break 4-1 up.
After the resumption UNSW Lions pressured the Saints as they camped in their half and hit the bar twice but could not buy a goal.
As it is with football, St George FC went down the other end through Nicopoulos and she added her fifteenth of the season.
The visitors added a sixth to round out the scoring with Rachelle Wang exploited the high line of UNSW Lions to score.
Afterwards Saints coach Carlo Tini was
"It was a good result, six goals against University because we waited all season for that. All the young girls who were promoted stepped up and we are moving forward to next year." added Tini.
Hat-trick hero Lily Chen had a good feeling in the warm up that today would be her day.
"I felt pretty good before the game and thanks to my teammates who helped me get the goals and the result." added a delighted Chen.
Conversely Renato Jelen lamented the loss.
"We started well and got the header goal after some nice interplay. St George though were too fast for our centre backs and we conceded." added Jelen.
'Full credit to St George FC as they were the better side today but now we move onto an elimination final against SD Raiders." finished Jelen.
UNSW Lions 1 (Marzotto '5)
St George FC 6 (Chen '20, '24 and '43, Carosi '27, Nicopoulos '64 and 'Wang '90)
UNSW Lions: MARAS Adrianna, BRUNO Claudia, AMBERG Amanda, TESANOVIC Roksandra(HEWSON '45), GOULDING Georgia, ORR Helen, ABEL Danielle, KAVA Lauren Clare, SKEOCH Kelsey, MARZOTTO Luisa and HELM Donna
St George FC: GARDNER Lauren, SMITH Carla, BENNETT Amy, CAROSI Jessica, NICOPOULOS Marissa(WANG '75), STANTON Vanessa, YOUNG Bronte, CHEN Lily, SUTHERLAND Loren, THUMAKIS Theani and KOINIS Peta
Mt Druitt Town Rangers 3 defeated Parramatta FC 0
In a tough season for the Town Rangers, they finished off the season with a splendid 3-nil victory over bottom placed Parramatta FC.
Coach Danny Abboud remarked it was a reward for all the hard work the team put in this season and a great performance to finish on.
Town Rangers finish the season in seventh while Parramatta FC lick their wounds after finishing at the bottom.
Western NSW Mariners 6 defeated Gladesville Ravens 2
Western NSW Mariners warmed up for their semi-final clash against APIA with a eight goal thriller in Mudgee this afternoon.
Former W-League star Samantha Wood bagged a hat-trick in a powerful display which put the Mariners 3-nil up at the break.
Tayla Lloyd added a brace while Teegan Courtney scored herself in a performance that pleased coach Michael Godbier.
For the Ravens Paige Vansaarloos and Isabelle Bianchino finished the season with a goal each.
APIA Leichhardt Tigers 1 drew with SD Raiders 1
One point was enough for APIA as Dana Buttigeig's 21st minute goal led them to the State League Women's Premiership.
It was a tough battle from the opening whistle as neither side gave an inch and chances were sparse.
From a corner Buttigieg lept highest to hammer the ball home and give APIA one hand on the premiership.
SD Raiders continued to fight though and went close several times if not for some stellar defending from the home side.
Eventually who else but Catherine Cannuli popped up and outpaced her defender to slot home the equaliser.
Both teams continued to battle and as the clock ticked on, SD Raiders gained an upper hand but couldn't find the crucial second goal.
It would be a point shared and the premiership going to Lambert Park.
Afterwards APIA coach Matteo Maiorana was delighted at capturing the main prize.
"We really wanted the premiership and the girls worked hard for it all year. Despite what may happen in the finals this proves who was the best side." beamed Maiorana.
Goalscorer Buttigieg was delighted to repay the faith her coach had in her.
"I knew this had to be my game as I haven't performed since my suspension so I was pleased to score one. APIA is in my blood and I am just speechless." finished a delighted Buttigieg.
For SD Raiders their coaches were delighted with the effort and welcomed the task awaiting them in the finals series.
APIA Leichhardt Tigers 1 (Buttigieg '21)
SD Raiders 1 (Cannuli '25)
APIA Leichhardt Tigers: HALPIN Courtney, GLANVILLE-FYFE Stephanie, BUTTIGIEG Dana, SCARLATO Samathana, GILFEDDER Lucy, CLOUT Erin, CANINI Carla, FERREYRA Christina, URKANCI Filiz(SCHUMAN '92), SIM-SING Marie and MUNRO Clare(CICCO '77)
Subs not used: FRIEND Lucy and BLACK Tricia
SD Raiders: MOODLEY Karrinda, HAMMOUD Sasha, D'MELLO Rhea, MOIO Caterina(KLAPOS '65), HANKIN Brooke, CARIDAD Dominique, MONTI Nicole, CANNULI Catherine, KROPE Courtney(BITTNER '84), CONEJEROS-BERJERIE Stephanie and IGNJATOVIC Natalia
Subs not used: SAUVINE Alyssa and GAVIN Shauna
Source FNSW -By Justin Davies, State League Women's reporter