Round Nine was filled with thrills and spills in the #NPLWNSW competition with a top of the table blockbuster ending in a share of the spoils and a first win of the season for another.
Bankstown City 1-0 APIA Leichhardt
In arguably the shock of the round, Bankstown City rocked APIA Leichhardt with a 1-0 victory at Jensen Park.
Matt Costantini managed to get one over his old team in style with an early goal from Daisy Arrowsmith.
Disappointing from APIA after last week’s high and fantastic result, they were brought right back down with this defeat.
It was an incredible start for the home team, Paige Hayward picking up the ball on the right before squaring it across goal for Arrowsmith who taped it in beyond Sarah Langman.
Rhianna Pollicina had a good chance for the visitors just after the half hour mark but was denied by Brianna Edwards.
The second half began with some APIA pressure and a snap shot from Shea Connors which was well saved. Connors went close again shortly after but it was Edwards who came out on top again.
Arrowsmith had the home team’s first shot in the second half but Langman managed to save.
APIA then went all out to find an equaliser but the Bankstown defence and Edwards in goal heal firm.
It could have finished 2-0 had Langman not made a fine save from Georgia Plessas.
Football NSW Institute 1-0 NWS Spirit
It was a first win of the campaign for the Football NSW Institute as they defeated the NWS Koalas by the odd goal.
A tight game with not many chances was settle by a goal late in the match going the way of the home team.
The Institute broke away and caught Spirit on the counter, Daniela Galic slipped in Daniella Sara Naeimi who hit her effort first time to find the back of the net.
That victory for the Football NSW Institute was enough to see them leapfrog Spirit on the competition table.
Manly United 0-0 Sydney University
At Cromer Park on Sunday night, Manly United and Sydney University had to settle for a share of the spoils.
Manly should have had the lead just before half time, Polly Dorran hitting her team mate Emily Minett with a header which looked goal bound.
Rola Badawiya had Uni’s first real chance just after half time but Nicole Simonsen saved well.
Uni was lifting the pressure and Holly Caspers almost broke the deadlock with just over 20 to go.
Neither team could break the dead lock and had to settle for a point, Manly’s sixth draw in nine games.
Blacktown Spartans 1-2 Macarthur Rams
The Macarthur Rams secured a massive three points defeating the Blacktown Spartans 2-1 at Blacktown Football Park.
It was the visitors that started the match better and hit the front after just four minutes.
Beth Gordon sent a cross across goal for who else but the little magician Patty Charalambous to pop up at the far post and tap the ball beyond Sally James.
Laura Murtagh was next to have a good opportunity but took the ball to far wide and couldn’t beat James with her effort.
They didn’t need to wait long to double their lead though as they scored in the 26th minute. Leena Khamis looked to have reacted poorly to the first chance she was given but reacted well to keep the ball alive. The veteran striker played the ball back to Laura Murtagh who crossed into the box, the ball falling to Khamis after a scrappy clearance, who made no mistake, scoring at the near post.
The home team finally got into the first half as it came to an end but did not really test Brianna Clarke.
Clarke was called into action early in the second period but made a fine save to keep her team two goals to the good.
With just over 10 minutes to go Blacktown were back into it. Naomi Chinama flying high at the back post sent a bullet header into the back of the net to give the home side a lifeline.
The Rams held on though to take home all three points.
Sydney Olympic 1-1 Northern Tigers
All eyes were on the top of the table clash at Peter Moore Field as Sydney Olympic and the Northern Tigers shared the spoils.
Olympic stared somewhat shaky and two quick chances for the visitors went unpunished.
It took only nine minutes for the Tigers to hit the front. Hannah McNulty played in an excellent ball for Shay Evans who rounded Jada Whyman before cutting back for Ash Brodigan who added another goal to her list.
10 minutes before the break and the home team were level. A deep ball to the far post from Sarah Yatim found Jess Frampton who somehow forced the ball over the line.
Olympic somehow didn’t hit the front after a goal mouth scramble minutes after the break.
The Tigers were next to go close after a scramble of their own but it was no problem for the Olympic goal keeper.
The best chance of the match fell to Cortnee Vine minutes later but the Olympic speedster sent her effort inches wide of the goal.
Chances at each end continued as Brodigan thought she had her second and put the Tigers in front, only for Whyman to pull off a top draw save.
Olympic again had a golden opportunity, this time through Mackenzie Hawkesby but like her strike partner, she sent her effort wide of the goal.
Olympic had a late chance through Vine but the Tigers defence reacted well to ensure both teams went home with a point apiece.
Illawarra Stingrays 2-1 Emerging Jets
Just as we thought the Stingrays would host their first game of the season at JJ Kelly Park, they had to move their match to Seymour Shaw. Nevertheless, it did not stop them registering all three points against the Jets.
The Jets thought they were heading for their first win of the season, only two be pegged twice and for the Stingrays to take the win.
It was the youngsters that hit the front in some style from a free kick through Bronte Pyke who found the top corner.
In somewhat controversial fashion, the Stingrays were level. Caitlin Cooper connecting with a corner as the ball was adjudged to have crossed the line for the equaliser.
In the dying stages of the match, the Jets hopes of registering their second point of the season crumbled. Again a set piece, this time to the far post found Cooper again who all alone squeezed the ball over the line.
It was the Stingrays second win of the season, keeping them within touching distance of finals football.
-By NPL NSW Women’s Chief Writer and Commentator Nikola Pozder