Seven-goal thriller goes Hotsticks’ way
White Hart 3
Sliema Hotsticks 4
White Hart raced into a 2-0 lead with two well-taken goals inside the opening seven minutes through Paul Torpiano and Karl Tua.
After recovering from this setback, Hotsticks reacted with sustained pressure as they forced three short corners in succession between the 13th and 15th minutes. They pulled a goal back when Silvano Vassallo netted with a well-taken penalty stroke.
Both sides won short corners during a period of balanced and entertaining play but Hotsticks scored just before the interval through Shaun Grima to level the score.
In the 41st minute, Hotsticks went ahead for the first time in the match courtesy of Dylan Lentini who scored with a well-hit strike after the White Hart defence failed to clear the lines from a short corner action.
White Hart regrouped and Matthew Camilleri equalised in the 50th minute. The Hotsticks were not to be denied though. They forced two short corners and Steve Portelli put them 4-3 ahead in the 57th minute.
It was end-to-end stuff now and White Hart created a couple of chances in the dying minutes which should have been converted but the Hotsticks hung on in the end to win a highly entertaining match.
Young Stars 0
Young Stars and Qormi figured in a goalless draw but the match was anything but a boring affair.
Qormi pressed forward in numbers while Young Stars countered by limiting their attacking options and applying pressure in midfield. This did not hinder both sides from creating scoring opportunities.
Qormi had a couple of half-chances emanating from free hits outside the D midway through the first half while Young Stars’ Andrew Camilleri hit the post from a short corner action with the goalkeeper beaten.
In reply, Qormi forced two short corners in the 32nd and 33rd minutes and had a goalbound shot deflected past the post besides hooking another effort over the bar.
On the change of ends, following an exchange of short corners, Qormi nearly scored but had a shot cleared off the line in the 56th minute while Young Stars failed to profit from a one-on-one situation as Qormi’s Ramon Chircop closed down space and angles to keep his goal intact.
Both teams pushed for the winner but it was to no avail.