MORNINGTON recovered from a 3-1 deficit to beat Mazenod 5-3 at Dallas Brooks Park on Saturday and retain top billing in State 1 South-East.
Mazenod’s Navin Vellupilay opened the scoring with a header from a corner in the 16th minute but 10 minutes later Milos Lujic equalised after holding off his marker then turning and striking the ball into the bottom left-hand corner of the net.
A Dominic D’Angelo penalty put the visitors 2-1 up and the impressive Luke Gallo capitalised on a defensive error to make it 3-1 after 41 minutes.
A minute later big Josh Heaton powered home a header from a Luke Goulding corner to make it 3-2 and when Josh Hine’s cross-come-shot in the 55th minute confused everyone it was 3-3.
A powerful left-foot strike from Lujic in the 73rd minute put the league leader in front and substitute Campbell Steedman finished off the game in style by thundering in a header from 15 metres in the 84th minute.
In NPL2 Langwarrin suffered its first loss of the season going down 3-1 to Werribee City at Lawton Park on Saturday.
The visitors led 1-0 at half-time through Nemanja Spasojevic who robbed Marcus Holmes and finished well past advancing Langy keeper Fraser Maclaren.
Another defensive blunder in the 54th minute and quick ball movement ended with a Rafael Tresca tap-in and three minutes later Bilal Habib reacted quickest against a static Langy defence to put the result beyond doubt.
A superb finish low into the far corner from the left of the area by Tom Youngs in the 90th minute was little consolation for the home side.
In State 2 Skye United hammered visitors Monbulk Rangers 5-0 on Saturday and climbed to second in the league table.
Skye opened its account in the 37th minute after an Alex Rojas ball across the face of goal was knocked in by the incoming Mark O’Connor and right on half-time a superb Jason Nowakowski cross to the back post was headed home by Marcus Collier.
Two minutes into the second half it was game over thanks to an excellent finish from Travis Ernsdoerfer.
A Caleb Nicholes header and a strike from substitute Dean Piemonte sealed Monbulk’s fate.
On Sunday Peninsula Strikers lost 3-2 to North Caulfield at Centenary Park.
Strikers midfielder Danny Brooks was sent off for violent conduct after just seven minutes but three minutes later Ben Doree was shoved to the ground inside the area and Aaran Currie converted from the spot.
Strikers looked in control even with 10 men but Josh De Baize gave the visitors a way back into the contest when he tripped North Caulfield captain Daniel Sacks and gave away a penalty in the 27th minute.
Gideon Sweet sent Strikers keeper Robbie Acs the wrong way and it was 1-1.
Five minutes into the second period Akiva Pilcer was sent clear on the right of the area and his low shot across Acs made it 2-1.
North Caulfield went further ahead in the 72nd minute when Pilcer put Sweet through on the left and Acs wasn’t given a chance to react as Sweet hammered the ball past him from close range.
In the 80th minute Strikers substitute Jai Power got clear on the right and his low strike went under the diving body of North Caulfield keeper Famara Djiba.
There was controversy over a couple of refereeing decisions in the final minutes of the match but the visitors were able to hang on much to the chagrin of a vocal local support.
In State 3 there appears to be no stopping the juggernaut that is league leader Frankston Pines as Whitehorse United can verify after Pines thumped the visitors 5-0 on Friday night.
Pines played with 10 men after Jordon “Caka” Avraham received a second yellow card and was sent off in the 40th minute but by then Pines were 3-0 up.
Alex Roberts opened the scoring in the 15th minute after a sweeping move down the left saw the ball switched inside and laid off by Savenaca Baledrokadroka to Roberts whose firm low shot beat Whitehorse keeper Michael van Eijk.
Roberts struck again with a first-time shot at the back post after a superb Hamraz Zenoozi run down the left then Avraham’s free kick on the left in the 37th minute eluded everyone and left van Eijk flat-footed.
Christian Malgioglio broke clear in the 83rd minute and neatly finished well in a one-on-one with van Eijk then turned provider in the 90th minute when he pounced on a poor ball out from the back and set up Max Boulton who scored from close range.
In State 4 Seaford United remained at the head of the ladder with a 5-1 drubbing of Dingley Stars at North Seaford Reserve on Saturday.
Harry McCartney reports that the day belonged to star Seaford striker Dylan Waugh whose four first-half goals ended the contest.
Taylan Yildirim reduced the deficit in the 75th minute but three minutes later Mitch Hawkins finished a fine solo effort when he hit the mark from just inside the box.
While Waugh was increasing his lead as the league’s top scorer Baxter was staging a remarkable recovery against Endeavour United at Reema Reserve.
Baxter was staring at a 3-1 deficit at half-time with only a Luke Grant penalty to show for its efforts and when Matty Durand grabbed his second goal in the 58th minute there seemed no way back for George Hughes’ side.
A second Luke Grant penalty in the 62nd minute made it 4-2 and Ben Meiklem was put through two minutes later and made it 4-3.
Jack Buttery made it 4-4 in the 79th minute after beating an opponent on the left of the area then placing his shot into the top far corner.
New Baxter recruit Charlie Parker made his debut off the bench and the ex-Mornington player is expected to have a major impact on his new club’s fortunes this season.
Chelsea had to settle for a point at home after drawing 1-1 with Keysborough on Friday night.
Carlo Melino’s men controlled long periods of play but struggled to score.
Chelsea conceded a late goal after failing to clear a free-kick but Piers Brelsford equalised with a low strike from the edge of the area in the last minute.
Somerville Eagles lost 3-1 to Springvale City at Ross Reserve last weekend despite player-coach Dave Greening putting the Eagles 1-0 up after six minutes.
In State 5 Aspendale Stingrays downed Endeavour Hills 4-2 at Power Reserve on Saturday.
It was 1-1 at half-time with Hayden Nuhanovic scoring for Aspendale.
A Kenan Nuhanovic double and a Ben Garside volley put Aspendale 4-1 up in the second period before a Domenic Dimanche goal for Endeavour Hills in the 78th minute rounded off the scoreline.
By then the contest was over with the home team paying for an undisciplined display which saw three players sent off in the second half.
Rosebud lost 3-1 away to Mentone while Mount Martha lost 7-0 away to Hampton Park United.
Here are this weekend’s round 5 fixtures:
SATURDAY, 3pm: Langwarrin v Moreland City (Lawton Park), Bentleigh Utd Cobras v Mornington (Victory Park), Mooroolbark v Skye Utd (Esther Park), Rowville Eagles v Frankston Pines (Park Ridge Reserve), Seaford Utd v Dandenong South (North Seaford Reserve), Somerville Eagles v Dingley Stars (Tyabb Central Reserve), Keysborough v Baxter (Coomoora Reserve), Noble Park Utd v Chelsea (Parkfield Reserve), Mount Martha v Mentone (Civic Reserve), Aspendale Stingrays v White Star Dandenong (Jack Grut Reserve), Endeavour Hills v Rosebud (Power Reserve).
SATURDAY, 7pm: Heatherton Utd v Peninsula Strikers (Bosnia and Herzegovina Centre).