Canberra crushes Mariners

Canberra United scored an emphatic 3-0 win over fellow Westfield W-League finals aspirants Central Coast Mariners at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday.

Canberra United scored an emphatic 3-0 win over fellow Westfield W-League finals aspirants Central Coast Mariners at Parramatta Stadium on Saturday.

United turned on the style against the in-form Mariners to score three goals for the first time this season and stake a claim for a top-four finish.

A tight opening soon turned into a green flood as Canberra dominated proceedings after skipper Ellie Brush was left unmarked to head home from a corner played in from the left on 21 minutes.

United then came close to doubling its advantage with Caitlin Munoz hitting the crossbar with an impressive curling free kick.

Just moments before half-time, United's pacy teenager Ashleigh Sykes could also have grabbed the second but hit the side netting after outrunning the defence.

After the break Sykes had the ball in the net only to be denied by an offside call after a delightful pass from strike-partner Munoz.

It was then Munoz's turn to be denied as United enjoyed a lengthy period of dominance.

The Matildas striker latched onto a fine Amy Chapman pass that split the defence but she was denied by the boot of Mariners keeper Emma-Kate Dewhurst with her follow-up cleared off the line.

Kara Mowbray set up another close call for United with a speedy break down the left flank, but Sykes narrowly failed to finish from close range.

The Mariners had no answer to United's movement in attack and the visitors were finally rewarded with Hayley Crawford placing her shot into the net from near the penalty spot after a fine run from Amy Chapman.

The impressive Chapman played provider for the third time as United completed the scoring 12 minutes from time, when she fed a delightful ball for Munoz to coolly convert past the exposed Dewhurst.

Late on Mariners striker Jenna Kinsgley was presented with a golden opportunity to pull a goal back for Central Coast after running off Kyah Simon's flick, but Kingsley blasted her effort over the crossbar with only the goalkeeper to beat.

Substitute Christine Walters could have extended the lead even further when she broke clear of a tiring Mariners defence only to be denied by a solid save from Dewhurst.

The result was a stunning reversal for the Mariners after their record Westfield W-League win over Adelaide United just a week prior but coach Stephen Roche rightly remained optimistic despite the scoreline.

"All credit to Canberra, they played a strong match by dominating in midfield and that is where they won it tonight," he said.

"We are still in the running for a finals spot, so we will be training hard this week and we will be ready to face Queensland Roar next weekend."

Match Details

Central Coast Mariners 0 Canberra United 3 (Ellie Brush 21-, Hayley Crawford 71-, Caitlin Munoz 78-)

Parramatta Stadium, Parramatta Saturday 13 December 2008

Referee: Kirralee Gardener Assistant Referees: Ariane Nemorin, Liz Shorter Fourth Official: Kris Griffiths-Jones

Central Coast Mariners line-up: 1.Emma-Kate DEWHURST (gk), 2.Caitlin COOPER (c), 3.Lyndsay GLOHE (9.Ellyse PERRY 84-), 4.Rachael DOYLE, 5.Jodie BAIN, 6.Karina ROWETH (12.Gill FOSTER 80-), 7.Teresa POLIAS (15.Elizabeth O-REILLY 65-), 8.Renee ROLLASON, 10.Kyah SIMON, 13.Trudy CAMILLERI, 23.Jenna KINGSLEY

Substitutes not used: 20.Lisa HARTLEY (gk)

Yellow cards: Nil Red Cards: Nil

Canberra United line-up: 1.Lydia WILLIAMS (gk), 3.Amy CHAPMAN (18.Lucy ALLAN 88-), 4.Bronwyn STUDMAN, 6.Caitlin MUNOZ (19.Jennifer BISSET 82-), 7.Ellie BRUSH (c), 8.Rebecca KITING, 10.Hayley CRAWFORD, 11.Cian MACIEJEWSKI, 12.Kara MOWBRAY, 13.Thea SLATYER, 14.Ashleigh SYKES (17.Christine WALTERS 85-)

Substitutes not used: 20.Maja BLASCH (gk)

Yellow cards: Cian Maciejewski 60- Red Cards: Nil