NPLW Team of the Week: Round 3

by Staff Writers 0

GK: Katie Neville (Heidelberg United)
Although the Bergers eventually went on to win their fixture against Bayside by a comfortable three-goal cushion, things could’ve been much different were it not for some brilliant first-half shot stopping from Neville who was in inspired form. Was made to work hard for her clean sheet.

LB: Tyla-Jay Vlajnic (Bulleen Lions)
While Liana Iaconis’ goals may have come when the game was out of reach for NTC, it was Vlajnic who put Bulleen in such a comfortable position. Vlajnic scored Bulleen’s opener, then her second direct from a corner, then finally she assisted Olivia Edwards’ header with a well-delivered set piece. It was a sensational purple-patch for the veteran who is playing with newfound authority after her significantly increased role for Melbourne City over the W-League summer.

CB: Mikhaila Bowden (Southern United)
The American centre-half is fast establishing a name for herself in the NPLW Victoria and lays claim for one of the best imports of the season to date. Her two appearances for Southern have yielded two clean sheets, six points and a pair of best-on-ground performances as she helped rendered any Box Hill attack futile.

CB: Alex Cheal (South Melbourne)
Another dominant performance for Alex Cheal at the heart of the South Melbourne defence. While her side did concede two goals to Calder, the number of contests the South Melbourne skipper willed herself into was largely to her credit, with Calder exploiting a lack of midfield protection for the South defence.

CB: Jess Tay (Galaxy United)
Tay’s form to start the 2017 season has been nothing short of sparkling, catching the eye once again for a composed and assured display anchoring the Galaxy defence. Having developed into one of the league’s very best centre half’s, Tay was rarely beaten on her way to securing a clean sheet and even set the tone with the opening goal in the 4-0 rout of Alamein FC.

RB: Victoria Argyropoulos (South Melbourne)
Three rounds into the season and the South Melbourne wing back is starting to establish herself back in the top flight, having spent much of last season in the U18s at Alamein. Argyropoulos grew in confidence as the game against Calder went on, providing the majority of South’s transitional drive out of defence.

CM: Liana Iaconis (Bulleen Lions)
Playing for the majority of the match in midfield, then dropping to centre back, Iaconis showed her goal sense by scoring twice in quick succession early in the second half. While the match may have been done as a contest, the goals mark a strong start to the season for the Bulleen stalwart.

CM: Courtney Hueston (Southern United)
The American had a debut to remember, contributing to both of Southern United’s goals in a 2-0 win over Box Hill United. The former University of Miami midfielder outshone countrywoman Kristina Hall in the middle of the park, as she grabbed an assist for Indre Christy’s opener then scored herself directly from a corner.

CM: Adriana Taranto (Galaxy United)
One of a strong contingent of Galaxy performers – Kariah White’s work in a wide role was also commended – Taranto was praised for her work pulling the strings in midfield before coming off in the 85th minute for a well earned break. She scored her side’s second with a goal directly from a corner kick.

ST: Cortnee Vine (Heidelberg United)
Vine finally enjoyed the breakout game she’d threatened to produce in her first two fixtures for the Bergers, netting a double on the brink of half-time before being substituted out of the game. Her second goal in particular showcased her massive potential as she single-handedly burnt the Bayside defence as she marauded clear on goal.

ST: Melina Ayres (South Melbourne)
Another game, another two goals for Ayres leading to a South triumph. While it was perhaps a typical Ayres performance, appearing only occasionally in general play, the striker would appear to great effect as she popped up to first tap home an equaliser, then head her side into an 81st minute lead.

Rhea Schreuder (Alamein FC)
The Alamein winger was bright in spurts against Bulleen the week prior and despite ending up on the wrong end of a 4-0 result, Schreuder provided some rare moments of excitement for her side in an attacking sense.

Salma Tawfic (Bulleen Lions)
Although the Bulleen net was breached twice, Tawfic looked an assured figure at the heart of defence and put in a decent display to ensure Emily Shields had little to do in the fixture against Senior NTC.

Brittany Thomas (South Melbourne)
Thomas could not have made a more profound impact in her 13 minutes off the bench on Saturday, first delivering a perfect cross for Melina Ayres’ second goal and then outfoxing the entire Calder defence to score one of her own. Fitting that she starts on the bench for this week’s team.

Alana Jancevski (Senior NTC)
It’s been a tough start to the season for NTC with a young squad and key absentees early in the year meaning a number of younger players are being tested against senior women opposition. Jancevski only turned 14 this week, but her goal against Bulleen on Sunday showed quality that will have defenders around the U18 division hoping she stays in the senior team.

Kirstie Shearing (Bayside United)
Although it proved to be a tough afternoon for Bayside, who slipped to a three-goal defeat at the hands of fellow strugglers Heidelberg United, one shining light was the form of captain Shearing who was industrious for the visiting side to create chances in the attack.

Gulcan Koca (Calder United)
The versatile Koca was Calder’s best in their tight 4-2 loss to South Melbourne, working her hardest to get on top of the South Melbourne midfield.

Caitlin Pickett (Galaxy United)
A solid performance once again from Galaxy’s talented forward saw Pickett net her second goal of the season, albeit with a hint of controversy over an offside decision.