The 2016 Men’s PUMA F-League had a topsy-turvy round as East Coast beat both Dural and Inner West, the Warriors downed Vipers, who also managed a win against North Canberra, while Magic defeated Boomerangs.

The results make for a fascinating final weekend with East Coast (31 points) first on the leaderboard having played all their matches, the Vics (30) on their tail with a Queensland trip to come, Dural (28) tackle Inner West (25) in their final outing, while Magic also face Boomerangs.

Vipers star Adam Cooper (19 goals) has a commanding Golden Boot edge over South Brisbane’s Adam Stacey (15) and Warriors gun Wade Giovenali (15).

Inner West Magic 3 (Daniel Martinez, Daniel Fornito, Daniel Vellonio) East Coast Heat 6 (Chris Zeballos, Anthony Haddad 2, Jordan Guerreiro, Matthew Mazevski, Dominic Cox)

East Coast Heat 2 (Grant Lynch, Matt Mazevski) Dural Warriors 0

Boomerangs FS 3 (Elie Darwich 2, Benjamin Basser Silk) Inner West Magic 6 (Jonathan Barzel 2, Aaron Cimitile 2, Miles Downie, Daniel Vellonio)

Vic Vipers 8 (Shayan Alinejad, Miguel Barrigos, Victor Brauner, Jason Barrientos, Adam Cooper 4) North Canberra Untouchables 2 (Lachie Riddell, Aidan Brown)

Vic Vipers 3 (Alistair Dunlop, Victor Brauner, Jonathan Barrientos) Dural Warriors 5 (Michael Kouta, Blake Rosier, Jacob Basden, Konrad Machoy)

 

Heat cook Magic

East Coast Heat managed a 6-3 win against Sydney rivals Inner West Magic at Valentine Sports Park on Wednesday night.

A Daniel Martinez goal for Magic cancelled out Chris Zeballos’ early strike before a Heat wave – Anthony Haddad, Jordan Guerreiro and Matt Mazevski all scoring – saw East Coast ahead 4-2 at the interval.

Inner West tried hard but couldn’t bridge the gap, falling to their Sydney neighbours for the second time in a week.

 

East Coast down Dural

East Coast Heat put in a super defensive effort to overcome Dural Warriors 2-0 at Valentine Sports Park on Friday night.

The game started at a blistering pace with action at both ends of the court, Dural’s Chris Polkinghorne hitting the post from close-range inside the opening minute before Heat’s Chris Zeballos went one-on-one with Warriors keeper Nick Starr who saved well.

East Coast began to control the game and created many chances that could easily have seen them several goals up inside the opening few minutes if not for some handy keeping from Starr.

The deserved breakthrough came five minutes in when a clever chip found Grant Lynch unmarked in front of goal and he turned his header past Starr to give Heat the lead, but despite East Coast dominating Dural kept themselves in it trailing 1-0 at the changeover.

Heat continued their momentum into the second half although the best chance fell to Blake Rosier after Motomu Koto forced a good save from East Coast glovesman Peter Spathis and with the goal at his mercy, Rosier blasted against the post.

The missed opportunity would come back to haunt Dural as young Matthew Mazevski played a delightful exchange with Lynch before neatly tucking away the return ball giving Starr no chance and Heat a two-goal lead on the half-hour.

Despite going into powerplay for the closing five minutes, Dural couldn’t penetrate Heat’s defence with the home team recording a solid win – their third over Warriors in the past four meetings.

 

Inner West defeat Boomerangs

Inner West Magic pulled off the perfect smash-and-grab in the nation’s capital with a 6-3 defeat of Boomerangs FS at the AIS Training Halls on Saturday morning.

The Sydneysiders travelled the Hume Highway early Saturday morning to take on Boomerangs on their home court, the travelling Magicians missing the top end of their roster due to Futsalroos commitments, regulars Roberto Maiorana, Daniel Fogarty and Dean Lockhart away from the frontline.

Those who did travel Highway 31 put in a tremendous effort being pushed all the way by a youthful Boomerangs, especially in the first period where both teams looked to assert themselves and take control of the match.

Inner West opened the scoring in the fourth minute with a quality finish by Daniel Vellonio after some nice build-up play, and the visitors brought the scorekeeper into action for a second time with a neat strike from veteran Miles Downie with five minutes to play in the first half (the 3000th men’s F-League goal).

Boomerangs sprang into action with rookie Elie Darwich stealing two goals within sixty seconds on the resumption of a Magic timeout – the first from a quality inbound assist from Aaron Ciminelli and the second aided and abetted by a loitering Chris Smith, and the teams went into the break all-square.

The arm wrestle continued for the first 10 minutes of the second half with both teams missing several opportunities in front of goal until Inner West’s Jonathan Barzel scored followed by a deflected Aaron Cimitile with five minutes left forced the Boomerangs into a fifth-man powerplay trailing 4-2.

Following a string of patient passing Ben Basser-Silk converted for Boomerangs to halve the deficit with three minutes on the clock but the powerplay comes at a risk and a loose pass saw Cimitile net a second from his own half into an unprotected net, Magic adding another on the final whistle to take the final margin out to three – not a true reflection of a much closer game than the scoreline would suggest.

The result saw Magic consolidate their top-four position and the Boomerangs remain in seventh position on the league ladder. These two teams come up against each other again next Saturday in the final match of the regular season.

 

Vipers strike Untouchables

Vic Vipers did what they had to in a comfortable 8-2 defeat of North Canberra Untouchables at Hoops 24/7 Indoor Sports Centre on Saturday afternoon.

Goals to Shayan Alinejad, Victor Brauner, Jason Barrientos and Miguel Barrigos set up a 4-1 Vics lead at halftime before Adam Cooper stole the second-half show with four goals in the final 10 minutes stamping a solid Vipers victory.

Cooper’s compilation makes for telling stats. His ninth league game of three-or-more goals is the most of any player and he sits one behind Jarrod Basger for the most four-or-more tallies. It’s also the 20th time Cooper’s scored two-or-more goals in a game (equal with Basger) and now hangs just five short of Basger’s overall total of 86 F-League goals.

 

Dural topple Vics

Dural Warriors rebounded well from their earlier loss to East Coast with a resounding 5-3 come-from-behind win against Vic Vipers at Hoops 24/7 Indoor Sports Centre on Sunday morning.

The Vics blasted out of the blocks at home with Alistair Dunlop and Victor Brauner goals putting them 2-0 up after 10 minutes, but Dural’s response was decisive as Blake Rosier, Konrad Machoy and Jacob Basden all picked up goals to give Warriors a 4-2 lead at the break.

A Michael Kouta strike extended Dural’s advantage and the Vics could only manage a Jonathan Barrientos consolation as they fell 5-3, ending their three-game winning streak against Warriors.

 

This week’s games

The final 2016 Men’s F-League weekend features a Friday night Sydney-derby between Dural Warriors and Inner West at Dural Sport & Leisure Centre (7.30pm), with Magic to host Boomerangs FS at Valentine Sports Park on Saturday morning (10.30am), while Vic Vipers head north to tackle South Brisbane at Eagles Sports Complex on Saturday afternoon (2.30pm) returning to the same venue on Sunday afternoon to play Galaxy FC (1.15pm).

Photo courtesy – Ray Moon & Ashleigh Palombi