After gradually building confidence in the new competition, promoted Tauranga City broke through for a maiden win in the Lotto NRFL Women’s Premier League, lifting themselves off the foot of the table.
They beat Hamilton Wanderers 3-2 while at the other end of the table, Northern Rovers continued their 100% winning start to the season, seeing off Auckland United in a 4-2 win at Keith Hay Park.
Here’s our round-up from round five of the WPL:
Late goal snatches first victory for promoted Tauranga
Tauranga City secured their first win in the Lotto NRFL Women’s Premier League, beating Hamilton Wanderers 3-2 at Links Avenue.
The winner came late from 19-year-old Adi-grace Mooar (main photo) who scored against her former club.
Mooar, a WaiBOP futsal rep, was with Wanderers last year but joined Tauranga for their first season of WPL after the club’s promotion from the WaiBOP W-League.
Her matchwinning goal capped a thrilling game at Links Avenue where Wanderers fought back from being two goals down.
Talia Entwistle had given the home side a 1-0 half-time lead, after scoring in the 40th minute.
Abi Whitney-Collins doubled Tauranga’s lead five minutes into the second half.
Wanderers’ Maddi Ollington reduced the deficit to 2-1 in the 54th minute before former Football Fern striker Helen Arjomandi levelled the scores, scoring from the penalty spot in the 70th minute.
As the teams looked to be heading for a draw, Mooar grabbed the winner with three minutes left.
Red card turns crucial game in Northern Rovers’ favour
A red card with 20 minutes to go turned the game between Auckland United and the pacesetting Northern Rovers at Keith Hay Park.
The sending off of United’s Jess Philpot saw the side blow a 2-1 lead to lose the match 2-4, leaving Rovers’ 100% winning record intact.
Rovers had taken the lead in the game when Danielle Canham scored in the 22nd minute.
That was how the score remained till half-time.
After the break, Auckland United came out fast, scoring twice through the WPL’s leading goalscorer, Tessa Leong, as she netted in the 46th and 58th minutes.
Then came the straight red for Philpot as referee Yunjie Diao ruled she had denied a goalscoring opportunity.
The following penalty was then slotted by Rovers’ defender Michaela Foster, and it was tied 2-2.
The visitors took advantage of their numerical superiority and Estelle Harrison got them the lead in the 76th minute before Canham scored her second goal in the 80th minute, putting the result beyond United’s reach.
The win puts Rovers in a strong position after five rounds, scoring an average of three goals per game while giving up a measly three goals so far.
Selby double earns Rangers win at Ellerslie
Two goals by Lorna Selby earned the competition points for West Coast Rangers in their mid-table battle with Ellerslie at Michaels Ave.
She gave Rangers the lead in the 18th minute, enabling the visitors to go into half-time with a 1-0 lead.
In the second half, she doubled their lead on the hour.
That’s how the score remained till full-time, ensuring Rangers leap-frogged Ellerslie on the table.
Games played Monday April 25, 2022
Auckland United 2 (Tessa Leong 46′, 58′)
Northern Rovers 4 (Danielle Canham 22′, 80′, Michaela Foster 72′ pen, Estelle Harrison 76′)
Tauranga City 3 (Talia Entwistle 40′, Abi Witney-Collins 50′, Adi-grace Mooar 87′)
Hamilton Wanderers 2 (Maddi Ollington 54′, Helen Arjomandi 70′ pen)
West Coast Rangers 2 (Lorna Selby 18′, 60′)
Game played Friday April 22
Western Springs 3 (Rina Hirano 8′, Sophia Dyer 47′, Sofia Garcia 88′)
Eastern Suburbs 1 (Tayla O’Brien 53′)