FIVE-STAR PICCIOLINI ON TARGET FOR HEARTS
It was a Picco-perfect day for Unanderra as star striker Mark Picciolini netted five in a 5-1 rout over Warilla on Sunday afternoon.
Warning signs began early for Warilla as Picciolini fired two shots on goal inside the opening 10 minutes.
However, despite a positive start for the Hearts it was Warilla pulling one ahead with a solo-classic by Colin Walker in the 15th minute. Walker picked up the ball on the sideline at halfway before a miraculous run goal wards saw him beat four Unanderra defenders and finish at the far-post.
Wanderers shot stopper Brad Hunter was then called into action for the first time of the game, getting a toe on Picciolini’s shot to send the ball out for a corner.
Warilla then hit the Hearts on a counter-attack on two different occasions both led by Nick Tortorella. Two balls through the striker should have seen him find the target but both times the ball flew wide of the goal.
Hunter was proving a vital part of the Warilla side in the opening half-hour, saving Picciolini’s near post shot in the 34th minute.
But Picciolini could only be denied a number of times as he picked up his first of the day just two minutes later. Gliding through several defenders inside the box, the strikers finish blasted into the roof of the net to draw the scores level.
In the 40th minute, Dominic Magill was brought down in the box and Picciolini made no mistake from the spot to put Unanderra up 2-1 at the break.
Picciolini didn’t waste any time completing his hat-trick when he was slipped through one-on-one by Michael Saverino and made no mistake with the low finish just two minutes into the second half.
If an 11-minute hat-trick wasn’t enough for the home fans, Picciolini poked in his fourth off the post following a cut-back from Daniel Saverino in the 73rd minute.
The Wanderers only chance of the second-half came through substitute Elliot Smith when he ran through on goal only to drag a shot wide of the post with his weaker foot.
In the 90th minute, Picciolini was still on the hunt for five, and it was M. Saverino turning provider again to set-up the striker for a one-on-one finish into the bottom right, capping off a stellar performance from both Picciolini and Unanderra.
The Hearts bag their first win of the shortened season as they now move into fifth after two rounds. They return back to Unanderra Oval next Saturday to face University who are coming off a narrow 2-1 loss to Oak Flats.
As for Warilla, they fall to 10th following other results in the competition. They host Picton next weekend who are sitting in top spot as the only side to win their opening two games.
Unanderra Hearts 5 (Picciolini 36’ 40’ 47’ 73’ 90’)
Warilla Wanderers 1 (Walker 15’)
Unanderra Hearts: 1. GROOM Brandon (GK), 3. BARKLAY Blake, 2. NANOS Andrew, 6. MOREIRA Brad, 11. PERINICH Michael, 7. PLAKIAS Christian, 8. SAVERINO Michael, 9. SAVERINO Daniel, 5. PERRY Joel, 17. MAGILL Dominic, 13. PICCIOLINI Mark.
Substitutes: 43. MURDZEVSKI Chris (MAGILL), 4. D’ALESSIO Claude, 36. SHEPPARD Heath, 35. MANFREDI Lorri (BARKLAY), 37. OSBOURNE Lachlan (NANOS).
Warilla Wanderers: 1. HUNTER Brad, 2. ROBERTSON Stewart, 3. FLOWER Jack, 4. CASTELLI Martin, 5. GERIBO Brenton, 6. LEE Marc, 7. MCINTOSH Reece, 8. CRIGHTON Russell, 16. ATKINS Daniel, 9. TORTORELLA Nick, 10. WALKER Colin.
Substitutes: 11. SMITH Elliot (MCINTOSH), 12. FRENCH Jed (LEE), 13. ANDERSON Tate, 14. EDWARDS Nick (ATKINS).
Date: 2 August 2020
Venue: Unanderra Oval, Unanderra
Referee: Brendan Fotheringham
Assistant Referees: J. Zipparo & R. Strong
Report by Nathan Turner, on Twitter @nathanturner23_
Photo courtesy of Noel Wynn