PICCIOLINI POWERS HEARTS PAST UNI
Mark Picciolini continued his devastating goal-scoring form in the PeopleCare District League with a hat-trick of headers in a comprehensive 4-0 win for Unanderra over University on Monday night.
Christian Plakias opened the scoring in the eighth minute when his toed effort from outside the box curled away from University goalkeeper Caleb Biondo into the top right corner.
University almost equalised when Adam Bassuni leaped on a loose ball in the box only to power his shot wide of the far post. Then, in the 18th minute, a goal-kick had the Hearts defensive line scattering as Jonathan Liddle was able to snatch the ball away from Brandon Groom in goal but the winger also dragged his effort wide.
It was end-to-end action in the opening half hour as Mark Picciolini had his first sight on goal in the 19th minute, blasting his effort into the crossbar.
The next chance on goal didn’t come until the 42nd minute when M.Picciolini dragged his low shot beyond the far post.
Bassuni then got onto the end of a University corner first but couldn’t angle it goal wards as it brushed the site netting.
A solitary goal in the opening 45 with Unanderra edging ahead at the break.
It took just seven minutes of the second half for Picciolini to nod in his first of the night, finishing off from an accurate cross by Daniel Gorge from the right.
M.Picciolini then bagged his brace just five minutes later, proving to be a threat in then box again, he popped up in the right spot to head home off Luke Picciolini’s corner to push the Hearts up by three.
The students seemed shot after conceding two early second half goals and Ryan Sinclair’s shot from distance thought to have wrong footed Groom but it deflected wide for a corner.
In the 67th minute, M.Picciolini completed his hat-trick. Again getting on the end of his brother’s corner, the striker angled his header downwards as the ball rifled the net, making it a 15-minute hat-trick and his eighth goal in just two games.
The Hearts weren’t done with yet either as Scott Bridge brought on some energy off the bench when his solo-run saw his low shot saved by Biondo.
University had one final chance in the 89th minute when Sinclair slipped Bassuni through on goal but a slight touch from Groom pushed it inches wide of the post.
A dominant second-half performance from both Unanderra and M.Picciolini sees them throw warning signs towards the rest of the competition with the dominant 4-0 win.
Unanderra now move to top spot on the ladder with a game in hand over Picton. They travel to Oak Flats next weekend to set-up an almighty clash.
As for University, back-to-back losses sees them fall to eighth on goal difference, with a game in hand. They return to Kooloobong Oval for the first time this season to face Fernhill.
Unanderra Hearts FC 4 (Plakias 8’, M.Picciolini 52’ 60’ 67’)
University FC 0
Unanderra Hearts FC: 1. GROOM Brandon, 2. GORGE Daniel, 6. MOREIRA Brad, 5. PERRY Joel, PERLNICH Michael, 7. PLAKIAS Christian, 8. SAVERINO Michael, 9. SAVERINO Daniel, 17. MAGILL Dominic, 13. PICCIOLINI Mark, 10. PICCIOLINI Luke.
Substitutes: 11. BRIDGE Scott, 14. OSBOURNE, 4. D’ALESSIO Claude, 16. MANFREDI Lorri, 15. SHEPPARD Heath.
University FC: 1. BIONDO Caleb, 2. GALEA James, 4. DODDS Toby, 8. IVERSON Curtis, 11. PRESSLABER Christian, 6. MARTIN Josh, 10. SINCLAIR Ryan, 5. SIMMS Jordan, 25. WOODIWISS Doug, 9. LIDDLE Jonathon, 21. BASSUNI Adam.
Substitutes: 12. HOOD Matthew, 31. O’BRIEN Conor, 7. HANSON Cameron, 41. MAXWELL James.
Date: 10 August 2020
Venue: Ian McLennan Park
Referee: Caleb Blanch
Assistant Referees: Clay Ismay and Seth Green
Report by Nathan Turner, on Twitter @nathanturner23