Summer Soccer Update #7

An undefeated week for the Aussies involved also saw a couple of players amongst the goals as 5 players across three teams managed a win and two draws.

Starting in the States, and whilst Colorado Rush played twice over the weekend, racking up 6-1 and 5-1 wins over Santa Clarita and Sedona FC respectively, but Kahlia Hogg played in neither game. Also missing this weekend was Georgia Rowntree, who was absent from Sydney Uni’s 1-0 loss to NWS Koalas.

Moving onto the players that actually made the field, and Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch kept in touch with the NPLNSW Women’s 2 top four by managing a 2-2 draw with fourth-placed UNSW Lions. Meanwhile, in NPLNSW Women’s 1, Candice Sciberras played for Marconi as they also managed a 2-2 draw, against Illawarra Stingrays. The result leaves Marconi in 8th place, but now only 3 points adrift of 5th place.

The result of the round, however, definitely belonged to the Palm Beach trio of Harriet Withers, Nyomi Devine, and Ellie Papalexiou, who produced their best performance of the season as they triumphed 6-0 over Redlands. Ellie scored a goal, whilst Harriet smashed home a hat-trick to cap a brilliant day for Palm Beach.

Moving forward, and Candice Sciberras and Marconi have an incredibly tough matchup this weekend, taking on league leaders Macarthur Rams. Marconi have given the Rams problems earlier in the season, but this will still be a hard game for the side in sky blue. Staying in NPLNSW Women’s 1, Georgia Rowntree and Sydney Uni will be looking to use their game against last-placed Blacktown Spartans to their advantage and try to move closer to a top 4 spot. Blacktown unfortunately lost star striker Jenna Kingsley to an ACL injury in last Thursday’s midweek match, but the Spartans still troubled Macarthur Rams last Sunday, leading 1-0 before going down 3-1, so Sydney Uni will still need to be on top form.

Looking at NPLNSW Women’s 2, Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch take on bottom team Northern Tigers. Southern Branch have already won one of their previous encounters with the Tigers 6-0 and will be hoping to produce a similar performance on Sunday.

Up in Queensland, Palm Beach and their trio of future freshmen will be hoping to replicate this weekend’s performance against Olympic FC, whilst in the Brisbane Premier League, Amy Armistead and Souths United take on second placed Eastern Suburbs in a tough matchup.

On the other side of the Pacific, Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush face a solid Seattle Sounders team in their first match of the weekend, before taking on Sedona FC in their second match of the weekend. The Rush are finishing the season strongly and should pick up a win against Sedona, whilst taking points off Seattle is not out of the question. Speaking of Seattle, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah get back on the field this week, taking on Fuerza FC before playing their two matches against local rivals AC Seattle on Friday and Tuesday.

Summer Soccer Update #6

With a range of byes and cancelled matches this week, only three players managed to get onto the field this week, but there was more than a pinch of good news for some of the players that did get to play.

Starting in the US, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah were scheduled to play Westside Timbers, but the game was unfortunately cancelled due to a lack of available officials. Kahila Hogg’s Colorado Rush side managed an upset 2-1 win over Seattle Sounders, a result that moves Seattle within one loss of failing in their chase for top spot, but Kahlia was not named in the squad.

In Queensland, Amy Armistead and Souths United had the bye in the Brisbane Premier League this week, whilst Ellie Papalexiou, Nyomi Devine, and Harriet Withers enjoyed a league-wide week off as Palm Beach await their first second phase match of the SEQWPL season.

Moving to New South Wales, and Georgia Rowntree was unfortunately stuck on the bench yet again as Sydney Uni went down 1-0 to Macarthur Rams. Elsewhere in NPLNSW Women’s 1, Alex Huynh and Candace Sciberras were part of the Marconi side that notched up a 2-1 win over Northbridge to close the gap between the two teams to three points. Alex scored the opener for Marconi, burying the ball into the bottom corner of the net from a corner. This was Alex’s last game for Marconi this season before returning to Colorado, and her presence in the side will be hard to replace for the rest of the season.

NPLNSW Women’s 2 didn’t provide such great news, as Maddy Cornell was part of the Southern Branch team that went down 1-0 to Inter Lions, dropping her side to fifth place.

Looking forward to this week, the Palm Beach trio of Ellie Papalexiou, Harriet Withers, and Nyomi Devine face Redlands as the SEQWPL kicks off its second phase of the competition. Meanwhile, in the Brisbane Premier League, Amy Armistead and Souths United take on second placed Eastern Suburbs.

Moving to NPLNSW Women’s 1, Georgia Rowntree and Sydney Uni can jump opponents NWS Koalas for 4th place with a win, whilst Candace Sciberras and Marconi take on Illawarra Stingrays, needing a win to keep in touch with the teams chasing a finals spot. In NPLNSW Women’s 2, Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch also need a win to keep pace with the finals as they take on UNSW Lions, and a loss could see a 7 point gap wedged between themselves and 4th position.

Over in the States, Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush have a two game weekend, taking on Santa Clarita Blue Heat and Sedona FC Strikers in two eminently winnable games for the Rush as they try to finish the season on a high note. Meanwhile, in WPSL, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah have this weekend off – their next game comes on July 9 against Fuerza FC before taking on AC Seattle on July 11.

Murray State Sign Palm Beach Duo

Two more Australians will be making their college debuts this season, with Murray State signing Palm Beach pair Harriet Withers and Nyomi Devine. Harriet and Nyomi join Ellie Papalexiou as Palm Beach players moving to college in 2014, with Creighton junior Anastasia McCleary making a total of four ex-Palm Beach players playing in college.

Harriet is known as a speedy forward, and her pace and finishing abilities have terrorised defences throughout the South-East Queensland Women’s Premier League this season, scoring 16 goals in 12 games to sit fourth in the league top goalscorers list, and the top scorer without W-League experience. Nyomi plays in a deeper midfield role, with ability to break up opposition attacks and also launch moves forward from her own team, and has also tallied a single goal in her 13 games for Palm Beach this season.

Both players, as well as Ellie Papalexiou, will remain with Palm Beach until early August, where they will be hoping to leave the Sharks in good stead for the final weeks of the SEQWPL season as they leave for the US three weeks before their club season ends.

With Murray State playing against Southeast Missouri State in the Ohio Valley Conference, this means Harriet and Nyomi will come up against three other Aussies, with Maddy Cornell, Jenna Collingridge, and Bridget Sankey playing for the Redhawks. Their sole regular season matchup this year will be a home game for Southeast Missouri State on October 5.

Summer Soccer Update #5

It was just one of those weeks for the offseason Aussies this week. Whilst it wasn’t a bad week by any stretch, with 5 wins shared between the players, there were a couple of draws and losses that could just have easily gone in a more positive direction. Still, there’s plenty to be positive about, so let’s get started.

Starting in Queensland and the SEQWPL, Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach came up against a well-organised Peninsula Power team, but managed a 2-1 victory to keep them in touch with the league leaders. Meanwhile, in the Brisbane Premier League, Amy Armistead and Souths United managed a 3-1 win against Mitchelton to move away from the lower teams and within seven points of the mid-table pack.

South of the Tweed, Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch ran Central Coast Mariners Academy all the way to the final whistle in a 3-2 loss against the runaway league leaders. In a fairer world, this is not the kind of performance that would drop a team down a position, but the football world isn’t known for its fairness, and Southern Branch dropped from 4th to 5th.

Alex Huynh and Candace Sciberras were part of the Marconi Stallions side that punched above its weight in a 0-0 draw with 3rd place North West Sydney Koalas, leaving Marconi three points behind 7th placed Illawarra Stingrays but with a game in hand.

Georgia Rowntree was back on the team sheet for Sydney Uni after a prolonged forced stint on the sidelines, but remained on the bench for Sydney Uni’s 1-0 win over second placed Manly United.

Moving to the US, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah had a two game home stand over the weekend, winning 5-1 over Eugene Timbers, before following that up with a win over Westside Timbers the next day to move back into the lead of WPSL’s Northwest Division. Meanwhile, in the USL W-League, Kahlia Hogg played the final 20 minutes for Colorado Rush, but the side went down 3-1 to LA Blues, who are still yet to drop a point in the Western Conference. This was followed by a 1-0 loss to Bay Area Breeze, a game in which Kahlia played the last 13 minutes. The weekend’s results leave the Rush in 6th place in the Western Conference as the sides turn for home.

Looking forward to this weekend, Amy Armistead and Souths United have a bye this weekend. Staying in Queensland, the SEQWPL split in two for its second phase of competition, and Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach will play in the top section, but have a week off this week before starting next week against Redlands.

Moving to NSW, Georgia Rowntree and Sydney Uni take on league leaders Macarthur Rams in NPLNSW1. The Rams have slipped up a couple of times in the last few weeks, but got back on track with a 1-0 win last week, and Sydney Uni will need to be at their best to keep pace with Macarthur. The pairing of Alex Huynh and Candace Sciberras and their Marconi side have a two-game week this week, taking on FNSW Institute tomorrow night at Sydney Olympic Park Athletic Centre, before taking on Northbridge at home on Sunday. Meanwhile, in NPLNSW2, Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch take on 3rd placed Inter Lions on Sunday in a match that could see Southern move ahead of the Lions due to a vastly superior goal difference.

Over in the States, Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush have a tough matchup against Seattle Sounders Women on Friday night (Seattle time), who currently sit third in the Western Conference. The Rush may be out of playoff contention, but they have the potential to be of major nuisance value to the teams chasing a playoff berth. Meanwhile, in WPSL, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah will look to make it three wins on the trot as they play Westside Timbers, the same team they hosted in their last start win. A win for Westside would see them jump Issaquah for first place, but a win for Issaquah would see them potentially open up a six point gap at the top, although third placed AC Seattle have a game in hand.

Summer Soccer Update #4

There’s a new addition to the offseason Aussies this week, as NCAA Div 2 West Alabama defender Amy Armistead played for Souths United in the Brisbane Premier League this weekend. Elsewhere, there were wins on both sides of the Pacific and both sides of the Tweed as plenty of Aussies tasted success this week.

Starting in NSW, Maddy Cornell was on the winning side of the ledger against Western NSW Mariners as Southern Branch notched up a 2-0 win which moved them into 4th place, just 3 points off 2nd place, although 1st place seems a forlorn hope for any team but Central Coast Mariners Academy, who have an 11 point lead at the top with 10 games to play.

Georgia Rowntree sat out yet another week as Sydney Uni went down 1-0 to Illawarra Stingrays to fall one place to 4th in NPLNSW Women’s 1, whilst elsewhere in the same league, Alex Huynh and Candace Sciberras were involved in Marconi’s 1-1 draw with 2nd placed Manly United to remain in 8th position.

In the South-East Queensland WPL, Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach made sure they kept pace with the leaders as the league nears its split second phase by demolishing mid-table Peninsula Power 9-0, a result that keeps the side in second place, just two points behind leaders The Gap FC. There have been some very one-sided results recently, so the quality of the league should be better for the split into top and bottom half after next weekend.

In the second division Brisbane Premier League, Amy Armistead was involved for Souths United as they played out a 0-0 draw against Pine Hills, a side 11 points above them.

Moving Stateside, Anastasia McCleary had a week off as Issaquah recovered from last week’s daunting 3 game stretch, but Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush split their local derbies, going down 2-0 to Colorado Pride before demolishing Colorado Storm 4-0. Kahlia started both games, playing 86 minutes in the first game, before backing up with a 45 minute stint in the second game.

Looking forward, both of our US-based Aussies will be putting in double shifts this week. Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah will play twice in two days, on June 20 and 21 against Eugene Timbers and Westside Timbers, whilst in Colorado, Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush play host to runaway league leaders LA Blues on June 20 before welcoming Bay Area Breeze on June 24.

If Colorado Rush playing LA Blues looks tough, spare a thought for Maddy Cornell who faces up to Central Coast Mariners Academy on the weekend. The Mariners are yet to taste defeat and have an 11 point lead at the top of the NPLNSW Women’s 2 table.

In NPLNSW Women’s 1, Georgia Rowntree (if she plays) and Sydney Uni take on Manly United, a game they will be desperate to win if they are to chase down a higher place on the table, as 2nd placed Manly will put 10 points between the two sides with a win, whilst Uni will claw back within 4 if they get the chocolates on Sunday. Out in southwest Sydney, Alex Huynh, Candace Sciberras, and their Marconi side take on 3rd placed North West Sydney Koalas. Koalas are light on numbers but high on quality, and it will be dependent on which of those factors is more telling on Sunday as to which Koalas side Marconi will face.

In sunny Queensland, Amy Armistead and Souths United will be hopeful of a win against lowly Mitchelton as they try to bridge the 10 point gap between 6th placed Annerley and themselves in 7th place. The league has really split itself in two, and Souths United will need to put together a run if they’re to get back in touch with the pack.

Finally, Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach take on 6th placed Olympic FC. With top of the table The Gap playing 3rd placed UQ FC, Palm Beach will be making sure they take care of business, knowing that any dropped points by The Gap will see Palm Beach move back into the league lead as the league moves into its final phase.

Summer Soccer Update #3

A fairly successful week for the Aussies this week, especially on the American side of the Pacific, although there was good news in Australia too.

In the USL W-League, Kahlia Hogg played 79 minutes in Colorado Rush’s 2-2 draw against local rivals Colorado Pride, leaving the side in 6th place in the Western Conference but with games in hand on most of the teams above them.

Further to the north, Anastasia McCleary and Issaquah had a successful road trip to Oregon, with a 3-2 victory against THUSC Diamonds followed by a 2-0 win the next day against Eugene Timbers. The side played again this morning (Sydney time), however a result has not yet been forthcoming.

Back in Australia, the showdown between Georgia Rowntree’s Sydney Uni and a Marconi side featuring Alex Huynh and Candace Sciberras fell down a bit as Georgia didn’t play for Sydney Uni. Alex and Candace both played solidly for Marconi, but it was Sydney Uni who got the chocolates in the NPLNSW Women’s 1 clash, winning 2-0.

In NPLNSW Women’s 2, Maddy Cornell was part of the Southern Branch side that piled on the goals in a 6-2 victory over Sutherland Shire, which leaves Southern Branch in fifth place, part of a 4 team logjam between 3rd and 6th, with four teams separated by 5 points.

This weekend sees Southern Branch play Western NSW Mariners, where a win can send them 3rd, but a loss will see them automatically fall to 6th as their opponents will leapfrog them. Marconi face Manly United, where a win can send them into 6th, but they may fall to the bottom of the table with a loss if other results go against them. Sydney Uni will face Illawarra Stingrays, where they can consolidate 3rd with a win, but may fall to fifth with a loss.

Up in Queensland, Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach are back in action against mid-table Peninsula Power as the SEQWPL reaches its climax over the next couple of weeks, with Palm Beach needing a win to stay in the title hunt.

Over in the States, Kahlia Hogg and Colorado Rush have two local derbies this week; first up, it’s the reverse match against Colorado Pride tomorrow morning (Sydney time), followed by the reverse match against Colorado Storm on Friday morning (Sydney time).

In the WPSL, Anastasia McCleary and league-leading Issaquah have the week off, not playing again until they host Eugene Timbers and Westside Timbers (yes, two different teams) in the space of two days on June 20 and 21.

Summer Soccer Update #2

A mixed week for the offseason Aussies this week, with some solid wins offset by some unfortunately-timed losses.

First up, our American-based players. Anastasia McCleary made her debut for Issaquah in a 1-0 win over THUSC Diamonds that Anastasia herself admitted could have been a bigger win if not for the side’s profligacy in attack. Moving south down the west coast, Colorado Rush played out a 2-2 draw at Bay Area Breeze, but unfortunately Kahlia Hogg did not play for the Rush.

Back in Australia, Candace Sciberras and Alexandra Huynh were part of Marconi’s 2-1 win over Blacktown Spartans in NPLNSW Women’s 1, with Candace scoring the opening goal. Georgia Rowntree and Sydney Uni were not so fortunate, however, going down 3-2 to Northbridge.  The weekend’s results leave Sydney Uni in 3rd place, six behind second placed Manly, whilst Marconi move up one position in to 8th.

There was more bad news in NPLNSW2, with Maddy Cornell and Southern Branch going down 1-0 to Sydney Olympic. This result leaves Southern Branch in 6th place, but only 4 points off 3rd and 6 points off 2nd place. With only 9 of 21 games played, Southern Branch can still easily make a move up the table.

In Queensland, Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach found two top-of-the-table clashes in a week to be a bridge too far, going down 4-2 to The Gap. The result means that Palm Beach are now relying on The Gap to slip up, as Palm Beach remain one point ahead but have only two games to play whereas The Gap have three to play.

Coming up this week (all dates local):

Colorado Rush (Kahlia Hogg) v Colorado Pride, June 4
Issaquah (Anastasia McCleary) v THUSC Diamonds, June 5
Issaquah (Anastasia McCleary) v Eugene Timbers FC Azul, June 6
Sydney Uni (Georgia Rowntree) v Marconi (Alex Huynh, Candace Sciberras) v June 8
Southern Branch (Maddy Cornell) v Sutherland Shire, June 8
Issaquah (Anastasia McCleary) v Fuerza FC, June 9

The most intriguing game of the week is obviously the Sydney Uni v Marconi game. If Rowntree gets the start in goal for Sydney Uni, Candace and Georgia will be fighting it out for not only 3 points, but bragging rights when they get back to Wyoming (or just get to Wyoming in Georgia’s case!). No game for Ellie Papalexiou and Palm Beach this weekend; the SEQWPL appears to be taking a break for the Queen’s Birthday Holiday long weekend.