Sorrento fightback damaging for Floreat
Report by Ryan Borrett
Sorrento pulled off an astonishing comeback to draw 3-3 with Floreat Athena after being 3-0 down early in the second half.
The game was one of the matches of the season and could have massive implications for both sides with only three league games remaining in the NPL WA season.
The rescued point saw the Gulls climb to fifth place, just a point behind next week's opponents Balcatta as the race for the top four heats up.
However, the slip has all but killed Floreat's outside chance of stealing the title from Perth SC, whom they beat last week. Athena now trail the league leaders by seven points with three matches remaining.
Floreat started the game very well and two goals from winger Adam Falcone saw them go 2-0 after just 12 minutes.
Falcone opened the scoring with a low powerful shot past youngster Matthew Giudicatti, who was stepping in for Sorrento No1 James Morgan, and he doubled Athena’s advantage shortly after thanks to some good hold-up play by Robert Petkov.
Sorrento had a great chance to get a goal back in the 24th minute after being given an indirect free kick inside Floreat’s box but David Stokoe’s powerful strike was kept out by the Floreat wall.
Petkov made it 3-0 for Floreat in the 50th minute from the penalty spot after Shaun Kilkelly handled the ball and it looked like Sorrento were down and out.
But the tables started to turn in the 59th minute when Kilkelly made up for his earlier mistake with a headed goal from Vittiglia’s free kick.
Six minutes later the comeback was well and truly on when Alex Morgan scored an excellent goal with a curling shot from the left wing that nestled into the net.
Floreat were under all kinds of pressure as Sorrento fought hard to get back into the match and in the 77th minute Jack Salter almost equalised but Athena keeper Jason Saldaris made a great reflex save.
However the Gulls kept pushing and levelled the scores in the 82nd minute after Jakub Prajza’s cross from the left found skipper Reece Vittiglia at the far post and he headed home to level it up at 3-3 and have Percy Doyle Reserve on its feet.
Chances from both sides in the final minutes came to nothing and the points were shared after a terrific contest.
Star player: Reece Vittiglia (Sorrento)
Sorrento 3 (Kilkelly 59min, Morgan 65, Vittiglia 82)
Floreat Athena 3 (Falcone 5 12, Petkov 50 pen)
Saturday, August 10, 2019
Percy Doyle Reserve
Referee: Joshua Nixon
Assistant referees: Sime Lozic, Liam Barclay
Sorrento: 1. Matthew GIUDICATTI, 2. David STOKOE, 3. Jakub PRAJZA (18. Jordan BROWN 90+2), 4. Shaun KILKELLY, 7. Alex MORGAN, 10. Jordan ROBERTS (8. Scott WITSCHGE 46), 17. Reece VITTIGLIA, 19. Jack SALTER, 23. Cameron TEECE, 30. Jesse OWUOUR, 32. Tristan STEVENS (11. Timothy HILL 46)
Substitutes not used: 20. Jaxon TEMATA, 60. Noah BLOCH
Yellow cards: Kilkelly 49, Vittiglia 70, Hill 87
Red cards: Nil
Floreat Athena: 1. Jason SALDARIS, 4. Adrian MADASCHI, 5. Thomas JEBB, 6. Jesse FULLER (13. George FESTA 73), 9. Robert PETKOV, 10. Nicholas AMBROGIO, 14. Ludovic BOI, 15. Christopher SALDARIS, 16. Ryan MALTON, 18. Phillip ARNOLD, 20. Adam FALCONE (32. Robert HARDING 83)
Substitutes not used: 23. Jordan BARBAS, 24. Sam THORNLEY, 29. Jack PAINTER-ANDREWS
Yellow cards: Arnold 87, Boi 90+3
Red cards: Nil