Gunnedah hits a purple patch

GUNNEDAH United might have found their best form at the right time of the NIF Premier League season.

North Armidale’s Ari Georkas (left) and East Armidale striker Jake Davies battle for possession in Saturday’s PL clash. East won 2-nil to keep its season hopes alive. Photo: pixonline.com.au

North Armidale’s Ari Georkas (left) and East Armidale striker Jake Davies battle for possession in Saturday’s PL clash. East won 2-nil to keep its season hopes alive. Photo: pixonline.com.au

The Richard Grant-coached United banged in 15 goals in the past two weeks of the McDonald’s-sponsored PL Southern Conference.

An 8-1 win over Gunnedah Hawks two weeks ago and then Saturday’s 7-nil success against Moree FC has the royal blues fit and confident heading into this Saturday’s final-round game against Oxley Vale Attunga Mushrooms in Tamworth.

That the Mushies are shooting for second spot on the SC ladder makes it an even more challenging mission for the fourth-placed Gunnedah United.

“We’ve been playing well the last two weeks,” Grant said  after Saturday’s win.

“We’ll go into the OVA game confident.

“Hopefully we’ll come up with the same form we’ve shown the last few weeks. 

“We’ll need to be at our best against them.”

United started last Saturday’s clash with Moree FC with the same 11 as the previous week.

“That’s the first time we’ve done that all season,” Grant admitted.

“And we played some nice stuff in the first half – we  led 4-nil at halftime and banged in another three in the second half. 

“It was our first clean sheet of the season.

“I was just as happy about that as the win. So was Brad McIvor (stalwart United keeper).

“It ws a pleasing day. We also won 5-2 in second grade and that means both sides will play in the semi-finals.

“At this stage we might be playing South Armidale again but that depends on what happens up there this weekend.”

While Tamworth FC will win the Southern Conference minor premierships in first and second grade and maybe the PL club championship, OVA is jousting for second with North Companions.

In the Northern Conference,  Joeys FC can leapfrog North Armidale in the minor premiership if it beats a Demon Knights side which is equal fourth with East Armidale, which kept its season alive with a 2-nil win over North Armidale last Saturday.

Young East Armidale striker Jake Davies is also in the running for a Golden Boot and he is equal leader with North Companions’ Ben van Aanholt.

Both have 19 goals, with OVA pair Adam Watson and Luke Purcell scoring 16 apiece and Gunnedah’s Andy Cygan sitting on 14.

First grade: GUNNEDAH UNITED 7 (Andy Cygan 3, Evan Lee 2, Adam Stacey, Dale Roberts gls) d MOREE FC 0. Second grade: GUNNEDAH UNITED 5 (Anthony Rowe 2, Lindon Stacey 2, Nathan McDonald gls) d MOREE FC 2 (Ethan Hayes, Jake Lockrey gls)

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop