UWA-Nedlands stun ECU – by Tommy Doleman

UWA-Nedlands stun ECU – by Tommy Doleman

Posted on February 28, 2012 in 'Reports'

UWA Nedlands took control of Group A in the Night Series with a shock 2-0 win over ECU Joondalup that gives them back-to-back victories over State Premier League opposition.

Jake Mann capitalised on a defensive mistake after six minutes which provided the buffer for a resilient University side to fiercely defend.

Skipper Steve Purton scored the winning goal from the penalty spot last week and he stepped up again on the hour mark to wrap up three more superb points for UWA.

All eyes were on the new boys playing in division two as they aimed to prove that last week’s win over cup holders Sorrento was no fluke.

They were under pressure in the early stages from ECU, who were coming off a 3-0 win over Quinns last week, as John Higgins forced a smart save from Kevin Towers from a free kick.

But Joondalup dimmed their bright start with some poor defending from a route one ball as Mann latched onto a long Towers punt up-field, getting the better of Dale McCulloch and slotting under an on-rushing Andy Banks.

ECU responded quickly with Higgins firing just wide from distance that Towers will argue he had covered.

The goalkeeper was called into action on the half hour mark though, this time Scott Blackmore was on set-piece duties, and again a sharp save was required from the UWA custodian.

On the stroke of half time, McCulloch had an opportunity to atone for his earlier slip, but he somehow headed over an excellent Higgins free-kick from six yards.

The second half started with a slower tempo to the first as both sides struggled to find fluency, and it was no surprise that a penalty was the source for the games second goal.

A corner whipped in from the left clearly hit the arm of Aaron Maplestone and Purton kept his cool from the spot to double UWA’s lead.

Back came ECU as Croft hit the side netting from Scott Bushby’s corner, and Maplestone fired just over from range, but as the game entered its final stages, frustrations started to boil over as the group leaders dropped slightly deeper.

Rob Draper went into the book for a second time with 15 minutes to play and with a two-goal buffer and the extra man, they closed out the match to put one foot in the round of eight, ahead of next week’s final group meeting with fellow division two side Quinns.

ECU Joondalup 0

UWA Nedlands 2 (Mann 6′, Purton 60’pen)

Sunday 12th February 2012

Local kick-off: 5.00pm

Crowd: 250

Referee: Josh Mannella

ECU Joondalup: GK: Andy BANKS, 3 Scott BLACKMORE (7 Luke SMITH 80′) 5 Aaron MAPLESTONE, 8 Scott BUSHBY (6 Declan HARGREAVES 80′), 9 Dale MCCULLOCH, 11 John HIGGINS, 17 Liam CHAPMAN, 18 Stuart HARTMANN, 19 Israel TAN, 22 Robert CROFT, (14 Jordan DODD 68′), 25 Rob DRAPER – Substitutes not used: RGK: Ellis COMPTON, 13 Shane DOYLE

Yellow cards: Bushby 24′, McCulloch 32, Croft 33′, Draper 65′ – Red cards: Draper 72′

UWA Nedlands: GK Kevin TOWERS, 2 Manuel ARAPIS, 6 Rob SPENCER, 7 Tom SELLERS, 8 Guy CLARK, 9 Roberto LUJAN (10 Michael DENNY 88′), 11 James PLOWMAN (19 Kyle KING 55′) 12 Jake MANN, 14 Stephen PURTON, 17 Brad SKEA, 18 Stefan DU PLESSIS – Substitutes not used: GK: Duncan LISSIMAN, 19 Themou GEORGIOU, 3 Matt WELLS.

Yellow cards: Purton 48′

Referee – Josh Mannella