ACT Women’s Premier League Football Round 11 – Review.
Sunday 29th June
Weston-Molonglo FC 2 v ACTAS 1
REPORT BY JOHN COLLEY: Weston-Molonglo FC have put together one of their best performances of the season to upset ACTAS 2-1 at the ANU Willows. It looked like it could be a long day on the field for Weston in the opening minutes, when ACTAS carved through the defence down the right flank, with Mikayla Van Deyk crossing to Emma Bestek who failed to control her shot, missing wide of the post from close range. That would be one of ACTAS’ few clear sights on goal, as Weston focused on maintaining their shape and not giving the ACTAS attackers any time on the ball. Their hard work was rewarded after 20 minutes as Annica Schoo’s free kick beat everyone including ACTAS keeper Georgina Worth, to find the back of the net. Weston looked set to take their lead into the halftime break, however, a defensive lapse allowed ACTAS space in the box, Van Deyk laying the ball off for Caitlin Cantrill whose shot caught Weston keeper Michelle Tifan off-guard, beating her at the near post. However, Weston quickly restored their lead in the second stanza, Hope Wilkins pressuring Ali Cook into a mistake, before calming slotting the ball home past Worth. Weston were desperate not to let their lead slip for a second time, with Tifan pulling off a number of key saves, including a terrific double save; Weston holding on to upset the young ACTAS side.
Canberra FC 0 v Monaro Panthers 2
Monaro Panthers moved five points clear at the top of the ACT Women’s Premier League table taking advantage of a slip-up by ACTAS at Weston-Molonglo FC and the absence of Belconnen United playing; the Blue Devils game was postponed, as they defeated Canberra FC 2-0 at Deakin Stadium on a freezing cold Sunday afternoon. The match was in serious doubt until an hour before kick-off when the referee pronounced the pitch fit for play and the Panthers will be glad the official did as they took home the three points. The league leaders were in front inside twelve minutes of a fast-paced encounter with a superb goal. Meeting a corner swung into the penalty area, defender Stephanie Coates sent a bullet header flying into the net, much to the delight of the visiting support and coaching staff. In a high quality match, there were chances for both teams but Monaro held the upper hand going into the half-time break leading thanks to Coates wonderful goal. The next strike was always going to prove to be crucial and it was Monaro who got it. Unsurprisingly, it was the league’s leading scorer who supplied it as Meg McLaughlin was left free in the area following a half-cleared corner and the striker kept her composure to take a touch and slot past the advancing ‘keeper to seal the points for the visitors.
Canberra Olympic 1 v Tuggeranong United 2
Tuggeranong United began a new regime under the stewardship of Westfield W-League footballer Snez Veljanovska with a 2-1 win over Canberra Olympic in trying conditions at O’Connor Enclosed. Veljanovska took over the coaching at Tuggeranong following the midweek resignation of former Head Coach Jason Warren-Smith for personal reasons and the player/coach. Who is sidelined through injury, was celebrating her first success at the end of ninety minutes. Honours were even at the end of an exciting first half as the teams entered the relative warmth of the changing rooms all square at 1-1. Tuggeranong had drawn first blood when Rhiannon Daisley struck her first goal of the season in only the eighth minute of the match but Olympic made sure that they were on terms by the break when Rhian Sabatino struck her first goal for the club at this level, poaching a 25th minute leveller. After the interval it was Tuggeranong who was mainly in the ascendancy as they looked for way past the outstanding Rebecca Lutterell in the Olympic goal but the ‘keeper stood firm for the majority of the match. It was therefore unfortunate that the Olympic custodian played a major part in the match-winner. Ann Mayo’s 59th minute corner was a devil to deal with and Lutterell could only help it on its way into the net for an unlikely game clincher.