Mariners score A-League win over Victory - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Mariners score A-League win over Victory

By Damon Cronshaw 27/01/2006 10:49:08 PM Comments (0)

Central Coast captain Noel Spencer scored a double to lead the Mariners to a vital 3-1 win over Melbourne Victory at Central Coast Stadium.

The win propelled the Mariners into second place on the ladder, above Newcastle on goal difference.

The Mariners, now unbeaten in their last eight matches, will be assured a place in the inaugural A-League finals ahead of the last round if Perth Glory fail to get maximum points against Sydney FC on Sunday.

The Victory meanwhile are no chance of making the finals and will finish second last regardless of results in the final round.

Melbourne midfielder Michael Ferrante stunned the record 11,945 home crowd in the 13th minute with a superb individual goal, his first of the season.

Ferrante cut inside defender Michael Beauchamp on the right wing and steered a left-foot shot into the net. Central Coast goalkeeper Danny Vukovic got a foot to the ball, but it was not enough to stop him being beaten at the near post.

The Mariners should have levelled proceedings when they were awarded a contentious penalty in the 24th minute thanks to a hand-ball in the box, but Central Coast striker Stewart Petrie's spot-kick was well-saved by Michael Theoklitos.

They only had to wait another four minutes to get on the board though, with Spencer netting from a Damien Brown free-kick.

Brown floated the ball behind a static Melbourne defence, and Spencer took control of it, jinked past Theoklitos and put the ball into an empty net.

Vukovic made an important save early in the second half from a Danny Allsopp effort with the scores even.

Minutes later, Allsopp again went close when he smashed a 20-metre shot just over the bar.

Spencer drove home his second at Theoklitos's near post in the 63rd minute after Petrie took a free-kick from the edge of the box, which rebounded to the skipper to finish.

Dean Heffernan continued his incredible record of scoring from left-back when he swept home his side's third in the 88th minute. It was his seventh goal of the season.

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