ILLAWARRA DISTRICT LEAGUE ROUND 12 REVIEW

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Picton Rangers 2 (Mitchell Hall 56’, Dayne Morley 76’) Warilla Wanderers 2 (Chad Keating 11’, 72’)

Picton and Warilla played out an entertaining two-all draw on a sunny afternoon at Hume Oval. 

In round 11, Picton picked up their third win of the season as Warilla suffered back-to-back defeats to University and Shell Cove. 

For the second straight week, Warilla took the lead early on as Chad Keating netted in the 11th minute. 

The Wanderers would ride this lead into the break before Mitchell Hall scored his first goal of the year to equalise for the Bushpigs. 

Warilla regained the lead when Chad Keating grabbed his brace before Dayne Morley levelled the scores again just minutes later to ensure the points were shared. 

Both sides made no change on the table as Picton remained in ninth and Warilla in seventh, seven points apart.

The Bushpigs host Fernhill next weekend as Warilla welcome bottom-placed Kiama to King Mickey Park. 

In the earlier grades, Warilla won 3-2 in youth grade and Picton prevailed 3-1 in seconds. 

Oak Flats 1 (Lance Condello 33’) Shell Cove 3 (Mimi Yaldo 6’, Dean Krkovski 21’, Paul Lee 31’)

Shell Cove got revenge over their earlier season defeat to local rivals Oak Flats, beating them at Keith Bond Oval. 

The Cove made it three wins on the trot with a 5-3 victory over Fernhill whereas Oak Flats re-entered the top five with a 2-0 win over Berkeley. 

Mimi Yaldo continued his goal-per-game ratio, opening the scoring in the sixth minute.

Dean Krkovski and Paul Lee then added to Yaldo’s 15th of the campaign with goals in the 21st and 31st minute to put the Cove up by three in the opening half-hour. 

Lance Codello struck back for the Falcons directly after to bring them back within two at the break. 

A goalless second half saw the game end 3-1 with Shell Cove closing the gap on first-placed Unanderra following their loss to Helensburgh. 

The Cove now sit in second, one point behind Unanderra with a game in hand. 

They play Helensburgh in their catch-up game on Wednesday night before travelling to Berkeley on Saturday. 

Oak Flats fell out of the top five after Fernhill’s win over University. The Falcons take on the students at Keith Bond Oval next Saturday. 

Both the lower grades finished the way of Oak Flats, winning 6-3 in youth and 4-2 in seconds. 

Kiama 2 (Austen Blencowe 30’ 56’) Balgownie 2 (Justin Potter 7’, Chris Hollingshead 21’)

Kiama picked up their second point of the season over a strong starting Balgownie side at Kiama Sporting Ground. 

Last weekend, the Quarriers were on the end of a 6-2 drubbing from Unanderra as Balgownie fell to the Bushpigs, 3-1. 

The visitors got off to the same start they did when these sides met in round one, storming to a 2-0 lead early on. 

Justin Potter opened the scoring inside seven minutes before Chris Hollingshead added their second in the 21st minute. 

Austen Blencowe continued his goalscoring form in the league, halving the Quarriers deficit just before the break.

Blencowe then equalised for his side in the 56th minute as he took his goal-scoring tally out to four goals in two games. 

There were no more goals for the remainder of the game as both sides shared the spoils. 

The point made no impact for either side on the ladder as Kiama sit in bottom spot and Balgownie remain in ninth. 

The Quarriers travel to face Warilla next weekend, who are the only other side they have nabbed a point against this season. 

Balgownie return to Judy Masters Oval next Saturday to face Helensburgh. 

Kiama’s youth grade came out as 3-0 winners before Balgownie won 3-2 in second grade. 

University 0 Fernhill 5 (Will Roberts 34’ 41’, Daniel Djukic 45’ 47’, Ben Ellul 90’)

Fernhill sent warning signs towards the rest of the competition with a 5-0 drubbing of fellow finals competitors University at Kooloobong Oval. 

The last time the sides met ended in a three-all draw at Ray Robinson Oval as the students were coming off a win over Warilla as the Foxes succumbed to Shell Cove heading into this one. 

It seemed to be a devastating 15 minute period of football that surged Fernhill out to a dominant scoreline just inside the second half. 

Will Roberts continued his fine form in front of goal with a seven-minute brace before Daniel Djukic ensured his side would go into the break 3-0 up. 

The Foxes didn’t stop there, firing out of the gates in the second half to make it four when Djukic added his second and his sides fourth. 

Nathan Thompson then received his marching orders just minutes later but this didn’t seem to trouble Dale White’s men as substitute Ben Ellul netted at the death to round out the rout. 

The Foxes picked up a big three points over fellow finals contenders as they jumped the students into fourth on goal difference. 

The students will hope to forget about this contest when they have another tough task next weekend against sixth placed Oak Flats at Keith Bond Oval. 

Earlier in the day, University’s youth grade won 1-0 as Fernhill won 2-1 in seconds. 

Thirroul Thunder 1 (Zachary Biddulph 87’) Berkeley 1 (Orcun As 70’)

At Thomas Gibson Park, Thirroul snatched a late equaliser to ruin any hopes of Berkeley snapping their six-game winless run. 

The Thunder suffered their fifth defeat of the season last round whereas Berkeley went down to a 10-man Oak Flats side late on.

It was a low-scoring affair in Thirroul as no goals were scored in the opening hour of the contest. 

In the 70th minute, Goats’ new signing Orcun As scored his first goal for the club since signing from Unanderra to put the side ahead. 

Berkeley looked on their way to securing their third win of the season until a late equaliser from substitute Zachary Biddulph ensured the sides would go home with a point. 

Thirroul sit in eighth and play Unanderra on Saturday at Unanderra Oval and Berkeley remain in 11th and take on Shell Cove at home. 

Berkeley’s second grade shocked Thirroul with a 1-0 win after the Thunder came out 3-0 victors in youth. 

Helensburgh 3 (Blake Currey PENALTY 44’, Liam Unicomb 71’, Brad Watts 90+8’) Unanderra 2 (Mark Picciolini 23’, Ryan Hunter OWN GOAL 90+6’)

Brad Watts scored the latest of winners to sink the hearts of Unanderra as the Burgh closed the gap to just one at the top. 

Helensburgh made it back to back wins to finish the first half of the season as the Hearts put six past Kiama away from home. 

Mark Picciolini netted his 17th goal of the campaign to push the Hearts ahead before a Blake Currey penalty levelled things up at the break. 

The Burgh took the lead thanks to a Liam Unicomb strike in the 71st minute as an unfortunate own goal to Ryan Hunter deep into stoppage time looked to have snatched a point for the Hearts. 

However, from kick-off, Brad Watts scored a solo classic to snatch the three points with the last kick of the game. 

The win for Helensburgh sets up a massive midweek clash against Shell Cove at Rex Jackson Park on Wednesday night. 

The winner of that game will jump Unanderra into top spot. 

The Hearts return to Unanderra Oval to take on Thirroul on Saturday. 

It was a clean sweep for the hosts on the day, winning 2-1 in second grade and 5-2 in youth. 

Review by Nathan Turner, on Twitter @nathanturner23_

Photo by Fernhill

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