Saints blow Neptunes apart

Saints blow Neptunes apart

Valletta earn first spoils

Aleksandar Ivocic of San Giljan lobbing the ball over Neptunes goalkeeper. Photo: Wally Galea

Aleksandar Ivocic of San Giljan lobbing the ball over Neptunes goalkeeper. Photo: Wally Galea

What was supposed to be the big match of the day turned out to be an anti climax when San Giljan Tum Invest thrashed Neptunes Leo Vegas to the tune of 14-4, while Valletta earned their first spoils of the season when they drew 8-8 with Sirens.

In an earlier match, Division One leaders Marsaxlokk Fischer came from behind to snatch an 11-9 victory over a gallant Otters Nivea with the decisive goals coming in the last stage of the game after the Gozitan team had done the running almost throughout.

Never was there any doubt that San Giljan are able to reserve their best when it comes to crunch matches.

Yesterday they put up a scintillating performance of power play and clinical finishing which completely tore apart Neptunes, to the point that the contest was as good as over by the end of the first quarter, given the form of both sides on the day.

The Saints’ grit and determination when employing rigid press and their ability to unleash their power on set play and quick breaks set the tone for a surprisngly one-sided duel.

The Reds looked submissive throughout and they had no answer to their opponents’ quicksilver shifting of the ball. Their tactics of zone cover were complely off mark.

The winners’ main ammunition came from Aleksandar Ivovic, Aurelien Cousin and Dino Zammit who each struck a hat-trick. However, it was excellent teamwork and alertnes which completely destroyed the Reds. An opening 6-2 defict for Neptunes was too much for them to overcome.

That San Giljan advantage was extended to 10-3 by the halfway mark after which.

The team guided by Marko Orlovic continued driving home their undoubted edge. 

Neptunes had long thrown in the towel, with their limited resources being mentally and physically drained.

 In the last match of the evening, Valletta again produced a resolute display to earn a deserved point at the expense of pre-match favourites Sirens who were coming from a win against Sliema in their previous outing.

The City team fought all the way even when they twice fell behind by three goals in the third session after they had themselves taken a 2-0 early lead.

They then managed to hit back, with Michael Rizzo, James Spiteri Staines and Michael Cordina each netting a brace of goals.

Valletta kept pegging after they were two goals in arrears into the last session.

The vital goals in the final quarter were netted by Aleandro Mifsud, Boris Vapenski and Spiteri Staines.   

Marsaxlokk 11
Otters 9

(3-4, 1-2, 4-2, 3-1)

Marsaxlokk: A. Xuereb, C. Spiteri Debarro, L. Calleja 1, K. Galea 1, C. Gialanze, C. Bugeja, M. Cacici 1, I. Vuksanovic 4, B. Buhagiar 2, R. Scerri, K. Lanzon 2, L. Gialanze, R. Bonnici.

Otters: J. Sammut, M. Borg Millo, A. Magri, L. Hyzler 1, E. Meli 1, D. Dimech, G. Mizzi 1, M. Jelaka 2, M. Paris, C. Zammit 4, M. Borg, C. Theuma, M. Xerri.

Referees: Alex DeRaffaele, Andrea Baretta.

Valletta 8
Sirens 8

(2-2, 0-1, 3-4, 3-1)

Valletta: R. Sciortino, J. Spiteri Staines 2, A. Agius, M. Rizzo 2, M. Fenech, R. Mock, D. Paolella, N. Bonello Ghio, M. Cordina 2, B. Vapenski 1, K. Galea, D. Fenech, A. Mifsud 1.

Sirens: N. Grixti, J. Zerafa Gregory, C. Presciutti 3, J. Sciberras, M. Grech 1, I. Riolo 1, C. Mercieca 1, D. Cutajar, J. Napier 1, J. Brownrigg 1, L. Caruana, M. Sciberras, O. Gauci.

Referees: Ronnie Spiteri, Andrea Baretta

Neptunes 4
San Ġiljan 14

(2-6, 1-4, 0-1, 1-3)

Neptunes: A. Borg Cole, N. Lanzon 1, T. Agius, K. Erdogan, R. Blary 1, S. Gravina, S. Camilleri 1, J. Camilleri 1, J. Abela, M. Zammit, M. Tabone, M. Azzopardi, I. Bugeja.

San Ġiljan: J. Tanti, P. Borg 1, A. Galea, T. Said, J. Galea, M. Zammit 1, B. Plumpton 2, Darren Zammit, A. Ivovic 3, A. Cousin 3, P. Fava 1, Dino Zammit 3.

Referees: Massimiliano Sponza, Massimo Angileri.

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