NPL WA Round 12 Wrap

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Round 12 of the WA NPL was one of the most predictable rounds the league will see in some time.

In a turn of events that surprised no one, the top four teams Bayswater, Floreat, Perth and Inglewood, all recorded wins, whilst the bottom four, Armadale, Perth Glory, Subiaco and ECU Joondalup all suffered defeats. In the only real surprise of the week Balcatta put six past a hapless Stirling Lions but otherwise it was par for the course.

Subiaco 1 (White 71’ PEN)
Bayswater City 2 (Marulanda 66’, 86’)
Rosalie Park

Bayswater bounced back from their FFA Cup exit to beat Subiaco 2-1 in a close encounter at Rosalie Park. Determined to make up for their loss to Sorrento last week, the visitors dominated the first half but were unable to make it count on the scoreboard. Danny Heagney had two great chances, the first a lob which fell wide of the mark, the second a low shot which was well-saved by Ryan Montgomery. Danny Dixon also came close twice having a shot cleared off the line before hitting the post shortly after. Gustavo Giron Marulanda finally broke the deadlock when he poked home from close range only for Subiaco to respond through Kevin White’s penalty. However, with time running out, Marulanda popped up at the back post to convert Todd Howarth’s cross to secure all three points for Bayswater.

ECU Joondalup 1 (Amphlett 82’)
Perth SC 2 (Pritchard 24’, Vittiglia 90’)
ECU Joondalup Football Stadium

A late winner from Reece Vittiglia ensured Perth followed up their FFA Cup win last weekend with victory over ECU Joondalup. Perth started strongly and only the actions of ECU custodian Jamie Serra stopped Mark Pritchard from opening the scoring but the latter came up trumps a few minutes later to give the hosts the lead. The away side improved after the break, Andy Higgins coming closest with a long shot which forced Francis Soale into a good save. Serra continued to keep Perth at bay, before Tommy Amphlett stabbed home to equalize for ECU. However there was to be one final twist as Vittiglia netted in the last minute of regulation time to send Joondalup home with nothing.

Perth Glory 1 (McDougall 82’)
Floreat Athena 4 (Arnold 12’, McMahon 52’ PEN, 60’, Stynes 88’)
Inglewood Stadium

After consecutive losses Floreat returned to the winner’s circle with a comfortable victory over lowly Perth Glory. The hosts started strongly and came close through Gian Albano and Jacob Collard early only for Athena debutant Phil Arnold to convert from a corner. The goal shifted momentum and only the efforts of goalkeeper Jordan Franken kept the Glory from going further behind at the break. Floreat didn’t need to wait long after the restart to double their advantage when Steve Burton won a penalty and captain Lewis McMahon slotted home. The visitors continued to press and McMahon grabbed his second after Perth failed to clear their lines. Glory youngster Michael McDougall scored a late consolation but Jon Stynes restored the three-goal buffer late when his volley hit the bar and deemed to have crossed the line.

Balcatta 6 (Catarcione 14’, Quinn 17’, 59’, Sammut 30’, Nazary 60’, Teece 86’)
Stirling Lions 0
Grindleford Reserve

Balcatta eased to victory with a 6-0 thrashing of a shell-shocked Stirling Lions outfit. Early strikes from Gustavo Catarcione and Patrick Quinn set Balcatta on their way and they were given another boost when Stirling ‘keeper Lance Alavakis was sent off after catching Catarcione outside the box. The Lions’ day went from bad to worse when James Sammut dispatched the resultant free kick to give the home side a three-goal buffer at half time. Moses Kalua twice came close to hauling Stirling back into the game after the break before Quinn added his second after a nice turn and placed shot. Zelfy Nazary added a fifth for Balcatta before the visitors’ captain Brodie Martin was given a red card late in the game. Cameron Teece completed the scoring when he slid home followed by more red cards to Balcatta’s Jordan Colasante and Stirling’s Michael Pugliese after a crude challenge in Stirling’s penalty box. Blamo Quaqua fired over from the resultant penalty but the damage was already done.

Cockburn City 1 (Patterson 5’)
Inglewood United 2 (Sesay 62’, Micevski 73’)
Dalmatinac Park

Inglewood scored a quickfire double to edge Cockburn City away to record their fifth win in a row. The hosts were quickest out of the gates in the first half and opened the scoring after just five minutes thanks to Rory Patterson’s delicate lob. Inglewood looked for an equalizer but were unable to beat City goalkeeper Curtis Aspden whilst the visitors’ own ‘keeper Aleks Vrteski was also kept busy. United finally found a breakthrough when David Sesay stabbed home at the back post following Jason Colli’s cross before they took the lead shortly after through David Micevski’s bullet finish. The hosts were unable to find a way back, and Inglewood rode out the final minutes to take the chocolates.

Sorrento 2 (McDonald 51’, 56’)
Armadale 1 (Hodgson 20’ PEN)
Percy Doyle Reserve

Sorrento had their skipper Steve McDonald to thank after his two second-half goals helped them to a come-from-behind win over Armadale. Danny Hodgson gave the visitors the lead from the spot on the 20 minute mark after the referee deemed Jack Eades handled the ball in the box. After a poor first half, Sorrento emerged strongly after half time and McDonald rose highest to head home a Tom Boss cross just five minutes after the restart. The Gulls captain scored his second in almost identical circumstances soon after, this time outjumping his man at a corner to give Sorrento the lead. Armadale pressed, looking for an equaliser, but they found James Morgan hard to beat in goals. Despite the visitors’ late pressure, Sorrento were able to hold on to secure a vital win.

Round 13 Fixtures
Perth SC vs Inglewood United
Floreat Athena vs Cockburn City
Bayswater City vs ECU Joondalup
Perth Glory vs Armadale
Stirling Lions vs Sorrento
Subiaco vs Balcatta

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