By Emma Burke
Heidelberg United’s senior women’s outfit have broken their two-game losing streak with a convincing 3-1 win over old rivals South Melbourne Football Club.
As usual, the match was a riveting event, with end-to-end action, but in the end the visitors to Catalina Street were no match for the Heidelberg Women.
The first half saw opportunities come from both sides, with shots from South rolling across the face of goal or sailing just over the crossbar, and a stunning effort from Heidelberg captain Stephanie Galea that was on target, but impressively saved by South Melbourne’s keeper.
Heidelberg managed to break the deadlock just before the halftime whistle blew when Keely Lockhart won a free kick. The dead ball was expertly taken by defender Felicity Georgopoulos and served on a dime to hit the head of Stephanie Galea who directed the ball into the back of the net.
The Bergers entered the second half with a 1-0 lead. It was a short-lived lead though, as South Melbourne managed to tie things up with a goal of their own. South Melbourne fullback, Bella Stringfellow’s long range shot was too quick to be stopped and ended up chipping Heidelberg keeper Melissa Maizels.
Tensions rose from that point and the desire to win could be felt palpably from the Heidelberg team.
A substitution from the Heidelberg bench saw defender Elly Torre make her way back onto the playing field, in for Miette Georgio, for her first appearance after a lengthy absence due to injury.
Torre’s return to the pitch was marked by a major goal line save she made after a corner delivery left the team rushing to get the ball out of the area and maintain the draw.
The Berger’s were quick to gain momentum from that point and made another surge towards goal late in the game, as Keely Lockhart again put in the work battling through multiple South defenders before chipping the keeper. Danielle Wise came barrelling through on the opposite side to ensure the ball hit the back of the net and a desperate South defender couldn’t make the final clearance, pushing United back into the lead.
The final goal came in the second minute of extra time, sealing the win for Heidelberg. Elly Torre capped off an incredible return picking up an assist with her cutback pass to Wise whose lifted shot went straight into the top bin.
Heidelberg United’s convincing win against South Melbourne will have them full of confidence for round 13, when they travel to Wembley Park to face Box Hill United, with kick of slated for 7:30pm on Friday, June 24.
Heidelberg United 3 ( S. Galea 42′, D. Wise 85′, 90+2′) – South Melbourne Football Club 1 (B. Stringfellow 62′)
1 – Melissa Maizels (GK)
4 – Danielle Wise
6 – Felicity Georgopoulos
7 – Stephanie Galea
8 – Kathryn Vlahopoulos
9 – Keely Lockhart (3 – Maxine Diblasi ’90)
11 – Sophie Papalia
14 – Tijan Mckenna
16 – Isabella Wallhead
18 – Eve Tiktikakis (22 – Elwen Parbery ’79)
25 – Miette Georgio (5 – Elly Torre ‘70)
Subs not used
20 – Natasha Stathopoulos (GK)
19 – Deana Kotsabas
29 – Caitlin McDonald