ILLAWARRA DISTRICT LEAGUE ROUND 9 REVIEW

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Berkeley Sports 0 Warilla Wanderers 1 (Joshua Young 22’)

Warilla maintained their spot top five with a 1-0 win over Berkeley on Saturday afternoon. 

Joshua Young scored what turned out to be the winner in the 22nd minute with his second goal of the campaign. 

The sides wrestled it out for the remainder of the match, but ultimately Warilla were able to get away with a tight win.

The Wanderers return home for a tricky assignment next weekend when they take on second-placed Shell Cove while Berkeley will face Fernhill at Ray Robinson Oval. 

Picton Rangers 0 Helensburgh Thistle 2 (Brad Watts 6′, Joel Mucci 80′)

Helensburgh picked up their fifth win on the trot, downing Picton 2-0 at Hume Oval. 

Picton were looking to build on their second win of the season whereas the Thistle had a comfortable 3-0 win over University. 

Brad Watts continued his devastating form scoring inside six minutes with his fifth goal of the season. 

The score remained 1-0 for the majority of the contest before Joel Mucci secured the three points for the Burgh with a strike 10 minutes from time. 

Helensburgh have now won five in a row, with clean sheets in the last three.

Andrew Paine’s men play their round one catch-up game against Unanderra at Ian McLennan Park on Tuesday night before hosting Kiama on Saturday. 

Picton remain in 10th spot with the loss and it’s another tough ask for the Bushpigs next weekend, playing away to ladder-leaders Unanderra. 

Oak Flats Falcons 0 Fernhill Foxes 3 (Will Roberts 7’ 83’, Daniel Djukic PENALTY 56’)

Fernhill picked up a crucial three points away from home, defeating reigning champions Oak Flats 3-0 at Keith Bond Oval. 

The Falcons came into the match having won their first game in three weeks as Fernhill eyed off their first win since round six. 

It was the best possible start for the Foxes with Will Roberts netting inside the opening 10 minutes to put his side in front. 

Daniel Djukic added Fernhill’s second from the spot just after half-time before Roberts put the game beyond doubt with his strike in the 83rd minute. 

The result on the day saw Dale White’s men jump the Falcons into fifth spot. 

Oak Flats sit two points behind Fernhill in sixth but have their round seven catch-up game on Tuesday night, hosting Balgownie. 

Fernhill will fancy their chances for another three points next weekend when they host Berkeley whereas Oak Flats travel to Thomas Gibson Park to take on Thirroul. 

Kiama Quarriers 1 (Chris Christodoulou 90+3’) Thirroul Thunder 2 (Robert Gyngell 31’ 46’)

Thirroul added to Kiama’s woes with a 2-1 win at Kiama Leisure Centre on Saturday afternoon. 

The Thunder came into the contest having lost just one of their past five games where they took on a Kiama side still eyeing their first win of the season. 

A goal on either side of half-time for Robert Gyngell guided Thirroul to a comfortable lead heading into the latter stages of the match. 

Chris Christodoulou’s strike in stoppage time was a mere consolation for the Quarriers as they slumped to their sixth straight defeat. 

The win for the Thunder saw them jump both Balgownie and University into seventh spot on the competition ladder, just two points outside the top five. 

Kiama back up their defeat with a mid-week trip to University before another mountain task on Saturday when they take on Helensburgh at Rex Jackson Park. 

The Thunder return to Thomas Gibson Park next Saturday to face Oak Flats. 

University 1 (Doug Woodiwiss 63’) Unanderra Hearts 3 (Mark Picciolini 21’ PENALTY 52’, Brad Strudwick 56’)

Unanderra continued their unbeaten start to the competition with a 3-1 win over University at Kooloobong Oval on Saturday afternoon. 

The Hearts sat three points ahead of Shell Cove at the top of the table following the sides two-all draw as University hoped to forget their 3-0 defeat to Helensburgh last weekend. 

Mark Picciolini popped up in the 21st minute to open the scoring for the visitors which sent them into the sheds up by a solitary goal. 

The Hearts started the second half with a bang as Picciolini grabbed his second of the day and his eleventh for the season, slotting home his penalty. 

Brad Strudwick added Unanderra’s third just minutes later before Doug Woodiwiss pulled one back for the Students from the spot inside the final half-hour. 

University’s Chris Twigg was then given his second caution of the match which saw the home side finish the game with 10 men. 

This made no impact on the final result as Unanderra gear up for their big midweek clash against Helensburgh at Ian McLennan Park on Tuesday night. 

They then return to Unanderra Oval next Saturday to play Picton. 

The Students also have a quick turn-around with a catch-up game against Kiama on Tuesday night at UOW Oval 1 before travelling to Balgownie on Saturday. 

Shell Cove 2 (Daniel Krkovski 10’ Mimi Yaldo 90+2′) Balgownie 1 (Blake Cotts 86’)

It was the game of the round at Barrack Heights Sportsfield as Shell Cove left it late to secure a 2-1 win over Balgownie on Sunday afternoon. 

The Cove were coming off a two-all draw with Unanderra whereas Balgownie picked up their third win of the season over Berkeley. 

Daniel Krkovski fired the hosts into the lead with his strike in the 10th minute. 

It was another arm-wrestle contest as there were no goals until the final five minutes when the game blew wide open. 

Balgownie nabbed their equaliser in the 86th minute when former Wollongong Olympic man Blake Coates came off the bench to score in his first game for the club. 

Just as Balgownie thought they secured a point, Mimi Yaldo netted in the 92nd minute to send Shell Cove players, fans and coaching staff into a frenzy. 

In the midst of the celebrations, Yaldo was shown his second yellow of the game and teammate Nirary Kanoun was also given his marching orders.

The win sees the Cove keep within touching distance of top spot, sitting three points behind Unanderra. 

They’ll be without their top scorer next weekend when they play Warilla at King Mickey Park. 

Balgownie will take something out of the match before their catch-up game against Oak Flats on Tuesday night before returning to Judy Masters Oval to play University. 

Review by Nathan Turner, on Twitter @nathanturner23_

Photo by Robert Bosevski

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