Round 17 Wrap up | 2020-2021 Macron SFL WA6 min read
After a 2 week break due to the Covid-19 lockdown, the SFL returned with a bang, with lots of fantastic goals & some outstanding matches.
South Perth FC 5 – 2 Stirling Braza Ginga FC
The SFL resumed with a blockbuster with South Perth (3rd) completing the double over a resolute Stirling (5th) in an absorbing encounter. New recruit Danilo Neves starred once again, opening the scoring early in the match to settle any nerves. And when Remo Capitani made it 2 late in the half, it looked a mountain too high for Braza to climb. But, with Adriano Martino back for Stirling, his response early in the 2nd half stirred Braza back to life. The 2 sides traded goals with Filip Rojnica and Claudio Tavares scoring, to maintain South Perth’s slender 1 goal advantage late into the match. And with Stirling chasing an equaliser, they played 5th man & that gave South Perth the opportunity to finish the match off with late strikes from Justin Pearce and Capitani. The win, along with scores in other matches opened up a noticeable gap for the 1st time this season between the Top 3 & the rest of the Top 6.
Fremantle FC 4 – 2 Cockburn EWA FC
Yet another mouth-watering encounter ended with Fremantle (7th) avenging their Round 4 loss to Cockburn (4th) in a seesawing match up, to notch up their 3rd win in a row. Fremantle started on fire with former EWA mainstay Deklan Burdle scoring early. Aden Da Luz equalised for Cockburn shortly after, and when Mark Gavranic gave EWA the lead it looked like they were on their way to solidifying their position in the Top 6. But, Fremantle responded via young gun Jake Pizzuto to send the match level at half time. The 2nd half saw 2 further strikes from Fremantle young brigade to help seal the match with Milan Rosic and Benji Mikhael placing Fremantle firmly back into finals contention, now only 2 points outside the Top 6.
Murdoch Warriors FC 3 – 1 Byford Venom FC
The final match on Friday night saw Murdoch (10th) bounce back against a determined Byford (14th), with talented youngster Alex Basto starring for The Warriors. In a tightly contested 1st half, it was an early strike from Basto that split the sides. And when Basto doubled Murdoch’s lead early in the 2nd half, it made The Venom’s task even harder. But, they did come back from a 2 goal deficit against The Warriors in Round 4 to earn a last ditch draw, so they held belief and kept attacking. A late strike from Meisam Kanani gave Murdoch an unassailable lead. Byford responded with a well-earned consolation via Leon Plug, but it was The Warriors who returned to winning ways to reignite their season.
Perth Longobarda FC 3 – 2 Perth Lions FA
Saturday’s run of fixtures opened with the match-of-the-round with Longobarda (2nd) overcoming a steadfast Lions (6th) in a stirring encounter. And, once again, Alex Kretowicz took the plaudits with a man-of-the-match performance, with yet another hattrick, taking him to the top of the goalscoring charts with 27 goals from 15 starts. Kretowicz opened the scoring early in a tightly contested 1st half, only for Ali Milhem, also having a standout season, to equalise late in the half. Kretowicz restored Longo’s lead early in the 2nd half, and, once again The Lions roared back into contention with an equaliser from Moh Totonchy. With the match edging towards a draw, Kretowicz completed his hattrick, and, as The Lions battled for an equaliser, the time ran out on an entertaining & absorbing contest.
Curtin Footbalista FC 7 – 0 Joondalup ECU Jets
The Battle of the Universities witnessed Curtin (11th) avenge their Round 4 loss to Joondalup (13th) in a commanding performance. The derby was tight early on, with both goalkeepers excelling as they were called into action. It took a stunning strike from target Abdullah Alsahli to break the deadlock midway through the 1st half. That goal gave Curtin confidence, with two further strikes via Hazrat Akhlaqi and Moreno Cappello giving them an imposing half-time lead. Alsahli completed his hattrick with 2 early 2nd half goals to all but claim man-of-the-match honours & seal the derby win. Akhlaqi too completed his hattrick with 2nd half strikes that gave Curtin their 1st win in 4 starts. As much as ECU battled to get on the scoresheet, a combination of posts & good saves from Curtin captain Milad Sabbagh kept them at bay.
Rockingham Cambio Cumbre FC 7 – 3 Balga FC
Rockingham (1st) extended their winning run to 8 matches, as they completed the double over an in-form Balga (8th), in a highly entertaining encounter. In a match dominated by former SFL MVP Tyler Garner, Cumbre started well with an early strike from Garner giving them the lead. Balga responded with a strike from their own goal machine Eraste Vyamungu to balance the ledger. In a tight contest, the experienced Faris Noor Rani scored with virtually the last kick of the 1st half to give Rockingham the edge at the midway point of the match. Again, Balga replied early in the 2nd half with Vyamungu’s 2nd, as the match heated up with a flurry of yellow cards. The match remained in the balance until a late 5 goal burst in 5 minutes blew the scoreline wide open, with a double from midseason recruit Igor Cvijanovic & a hattrick by Garner (to finish with 4 goals & man-of-the-match honours) easing Rockingham to a hard-fought victory. A late consolation via Cherno Bah will have given Balga some recourse.
Canning Ultra Tigers FC 5 – 7 Perth AFC
The final match of the round gave us a 12 goal thriller with Canning (12th) eventually succumbing to a battle-hardened AFC (9th). We predicted a high scoring match, and both sides delivered, with Josh Watkins opening the scoring in the 1st minute for The Ultra Tigers. AFC responded with 3 goals in 5 minutes via Oscar Pit, academy player Sebastian Iasenza and goal-machine Andrija Jukic to take charge of the match. New recruit Kurt Kuoakou replied to bring The Ultra Tigers roaring back into the match. And, in a seesawing affair, both sides traded blows with Mitch Norman, Watkins, Jukic & an own goal maintaining AFC’s 1 goal advantage in a 9 goal 1st half. The 2nd half proved less productive, but no less active, as Jukic completed his hattrick, Norman got his 2nd of the match & Josh Spencer scored for Canning.