MORNINGTON remained on track to achieve its aim of joining Victoria’s elite club competition with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Beaumaris at Dallas Brooks Park on Saturday.
Sam Scott snatched the winner for the Seagulls in the 83rd minute when Josh Heaton’s hopeful ball forward wasn’t dealt with by the Beaumaris defence and Scott volleyed home from 20 metres.
Mornington’s push to win State 1 and clinch an NPL3 spot next season continued with this sixth straight win that now has Adam Jamieson’s side five points clear in top spot.
Despite that Mornington has plenty of improvement to make.
“We were horrible to tell you the truth but we keep winning ugly and that keeps you in contention,” Jamieson said.
“We’re still some way off the NPL and we’ll try and add to our squad in the next few weeks.”
In State 2 Skye United defeated visitor Brandon Park 4-2 in the club’s annual John Ramsden memorial match last weekend to move into second spot in the league.
Daniel Attard (2), Jack Gallagher and Jason Nowakowski scored for Skye who led 2-1 at half-time.
The Ramsden medal winners were Mark O’Connor (seniors) and Saj Sugrim (reserves).
Peninsula Strikers lost 2-1 at home to Old Scotch after going two down in the opening 10 minutes.
Riley Anderton replied for Strikers in the 27th minute when he was at the back post to finish off Jai Power’s cross from the right.
Anderton and captain Danny Black had chances to grab an equaliser in the second period but failed to capitalise.
Danny Brooks should return from suspension this week while fellow midfielder Jon Guthrie is still trying to overcome a hamstring injury.
In State 3 Frankston Pines maintained their title tilt with a 2-0 away win over Middle Park.
A bicycle kick from CJ Hodgson put Pines 1-0 up after five minutes and an Alex Roberts header in the 52nd minute gave the league leader breathing space.
State 4 action kicked off on Friday night with Chelsea drawing 1-1 at home against Sandown Lions and Seaford coming away from Alex Nelson Reserve with a 2-2 draw against FC Noble Hurricanes.
Sandown led 1-0 after 25 minutes following a superb long diagonal pass that picked out Dobuol Kong on the left who took a touch before finishing with a low shot into the bottom corner.
For the second home match in a row Piers Brelsford salvaged a point with a late equaliser when a long ball in the 93rd minute was flicked on to him and he made no mistake.
Harry McCartney reports that despite going 2-0 up Seaford United had to settle for a 2-2 draw at Alex Nelson Reserve against FC Noble Hurricanes.
Dylan Waugh’s lob over Hurricanes custodian Kadir Andac made it 1-0 in the 20th minute but a minute later the big Seaford talisman was red carded.
But the 10 men went further ahead in the 61st minute when Mitch Lander broke into a one-on-on with Andac.
The keeper made a great sliding save but Lander followed up heading the ball into an open net.
Hurricanes hit back when Anthony Tang’s deflected cross ended up in the top corner of Hayden Hicks’ net to make it 2-1.
Then a stunning left-foot strike from Netra Chheng made it 2-2 but the tiring Seaford was able to hang on to keep its unbeaten record intact.
On Saturday Somerville Eagles smashed home side Dandenong South 7-2.
A deflected Rannesh Krishnan shot gave the Eagles an early lead which was wiped out by Betim Qaniu in the 16th minute.
Naseer Mohammad restored the lead in the 20th minute with a superb half volley following a long ball by goalkeeper Nathan Brown but a dubious handball decision against Bryce Ruthven a minute later allowed Malik Sulemani to equalise from the spot.
Michael Clark’s first goal for the club made it 3-2 for Somerville and player-coach Dave Greening sent the visitors into the half-time break with a 4-2 lead.
Three second-half goals from Greening ensured an emphatic second straight win for his side.
Baxter was thumped 5-1 at Baxter Park by title favourite Noble Park United.
The visitors were too skilful and too quick and the home side made matters worse with a number of defensive blunders while often losing possession in midfield.
Baxter featured new signings Lachie McMinimee from Pines and Joey Bucello but they had little impact with McMinimee often isolated as the lone striker.
Baxter’s injury list continues to grow with Nat Daher and Izaak Barr having to be replaced in the second half with hamstring injuries.
They join Lewis Gibson (broken leg), Charlie O’Connell (knee), Ben Meiklem (hip), Lawrence Komba (quad), Liam Duff (knee), Robbie O’Toole (hamstring) and Josh Wood (eye surgery) on the sidelines.
Charlie Parker was unavailable but is expected to return this week.
In State 5 Aspendale Stingrays staged the most remarkable fight back of the season so far recovering from a five-goal deficit to draw 5-5 with Bunyip District at Bunyip Recreation Reserve on Saturday.
Aspendale was 5-0 down when Adrian Pace pulled back a goal in the last minute of the first half.
With nothing to lose Stingrays coach Lee Barber reverted to a 4-2-4 formation after half-time and the visitors came roaring back.
Pace got his second along with a James Macnab double and the unlikely comeback was completed in the 80th minute when Noah Berends headed home from a free kick.
Rosebud won 3-1 at home in Saturday night’s local derby with Mount Martha.
The home side featured current Bulleen coach and former Joey and Young Socceroo John Maisano.
The 42-year-old played professionally in Europe with Atalanta, Westerlo and Scottish club Morton among others.
His corner was headed home by Dougie Cunnison for the opener in the 15th minute and later in the half Cunnison finished well following a move down the left involving Maisano and player-coach Mark Pagliarulo to make it 2-0.
Just before half-time a penalty from Mount Martha’s Kiel Burich made it 2-1.
Pagliarulo rounded off the scoreline in the 69th minute after turning his opponent and finishing with a left-foot strike.
Rosebud’s Stef Papaluca was given a straight red in injury time after a dangerous challenge.
Former Somerville midfielder Carlo Cardoso made his Rosebud debut.
NEXT WEEK’S GAMES
Friday May 7, 8.30pm:
Collingwood City v Peninsula Strikers – Kevin Bartlett Reserve
Frankston Pines v Hampton East Brighton – Carrum Downs Recreation Reserve
Saturday May 8, 3pm:
Langwarrin v Goulburn Valley Suns – Lawton Park
Boroondara-Carey Eagles v Mornington – Wilcox Field – Carey Sports Complex
Skye Utd v Heatherton Utd – Skye Recreation Reserve
Seaford Utd v Chelsea – North Seaford Reserve
Somerville v FC Noble Hurricanes – Tyabb Central Reserve
Sandown Lions v Baxter – Frederick Wachter Reserve
Aspendale Stingrays v Casey Panthers – Jack Grut Reserve
White Star Dandenong v Rosebud – Greaves Reserve
Pakenham Utd v Mount Martha – IYU Recreation Reserve