From goal fests to late winners, round two of the W-League once again had it all.
Brisbane Roar 2 Melbourne Victory 3
Dolphins Stadium played host to a five-goal thriller on Thursday night, as Melbourne Victory secured a 3-2 win over Brisbane Roar.
The Victory were keen to bounce back from their round one loss to Sydney FC, and took the lead after nine minutes thanks to an own goal from Kaitlyn Torpey. Their lead was doubled minutes later after the home side gave away a penalty that was coolly converted by Natasha Dowie.
The Roar recovered from the shock of going two behind so early in the match, scoring in the 24th minute through Tameka Yallop. There was a chance for Yallop to equalise just before half time, but Casey Dumont denied her spot-kick with a fantastic save.
Dumont continued to keep the Brisbane attack at bay in the second half, while Dowie did her job at the other end with an incredible volley to re-establish the two-goal lead.
Substitute Indiah-Paige Riley brought her side back in striking distance with a poacher’s goal in the 80th minute, pouncing on a loose ball in the box and side-footing the ball past Dumont. However, the Victory would hang on in the final minutes to deny the Roar an equaliser and secure their first win of the season.
Western Sydney Wanderers 1 Newcastle Jets 0
The Wanderers stormed to their second victory in a row at Bankwest Stadium on Friday night. Amy Harrison’s second half penalty was the difference in a match where Dean Heffernan’s side had complete dominance, holding 70% of possession and recording 29 shots to Newcastle’s five.
Harrison had the best early chance, hitting the post after a loose ball fell to her in the area. A stoppage due to lightning in the area didn’t halt the home side’s momentum, and Lynn Williams should have opened the scoring on the half hour when she tapped home from Ella Mastrantonio’s cross, but the American was (incorrectly) ruled offside.
The evening’s decisive moment came when Williams, who along with Kristen Hamilton had threatened the Jets backline all game, ran at the defence and sent in a cross which struck Clare Wheeler’s arm. Harrison held her nerve to score from the spot, and the Wanderers were never really troubled for the rest of the game. Credit must go to the Jets, in particular the central defensive pairing of Hannah Brewer and Cassidy Davis, for making it difficult for the Wanderers with a series of last ditch tackles and blocks.
Adelaide United 0 – 1 Sydney FC
Sydney FC showed every ounce of experience to grind out a 1-0 victory against a gutsy Adelaide United. Rhythm was difficult to come by for either side, as the game spread out end to end for most of the play.
Any early hope of Sydney carrying their round one form over to this game was quickly dashed as they came head to head with an organised Adelaide outfit. Adelaide showed their game plan early: keep tight and organised in the back, while winning the ball in the middle of the park and countering with intent to expose Sydney’s defence with pace.
The decider arrived in the second half. Despite most of the play falling the home side’s way, it was a moment of inattention that would haunt them. An earlier failure to expose the width of the pitch for Sydney, saw the team finally crack the Red wall of defence through the centre. Chloe Logarzo’s vision to slot the ball into Caitlin Foord’s path was all it took. The centre forward wasn’t going to miss in front of goal after drifting free of any markers in the box with the ball at her feet.
The Reds knocked on the door of goal again and again to no answer, with Mallory Weber persistent in her attempts. In the end, Sydney FC dug their heels in for victory over Adelaide.
Canberra United 1 – 2 Melbourne City
Coming back from a goal down, Melbourne City stole the points in their round 2 clash with Canberra United at McKellar Park on Sunday afternoon. Fielding ten internationals, City came into the game with three changes including midweek arrivals Rebekah Stott and Aivi Luik, and Kyah Simon returning from injury. Scot Claire Emslie was not named after suffering a training injury.
For their part, Canberra United kicked off with the same starting lineup from their round 1 win. City enjoyed possession honours in this physical encounter but met determined resistance from the home team. While not controlling their own possession quite as effectively, United maintained their intensity for the entire game and were able to counter-punch through the talents of the combative and creative Camila, plus the lightning speed and poise of Simone Charley.
The home side took the lead on the hour when Katie Stengel netted her first goal in green colours after Camila capitalised on a great jinking Charley run with an extraordinary strike from distance. The crossbar was still wobbling as the ball fell to Stengel in the box to finish. City’s Milica Mijatovic – their best on ground with Ellie Carpenter not far behind – squared the ledger eight minutes later after rounding Sham Khamis.
Milica Mijatovic scoring the equalizer for 1-1 in the 67th!
— Westfield W-League (@WLeague) November 24, 2019
Charley then hit the post two minutes later for United with a run and left foot strike similar to her worldie last week, followed by missed opportunities on the City goal by substitutes Bek Horsey and Ashlie Crofts. In the end it was Emily van Egmond who broke the home fans’ hearts, converting a penalty in the last minute of extra time after Yukari Kinga was fouled in the Canberra United box.
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