Age no barrier as youthful United continues to dominate

July 18, 2017

Sophie Papalia (right) was among Shepparton United's four goal scorers in it dominating win against Eaglehawk.

It was a mixed week of results for the Goulburn Valley women in the Bendigo Amateur Soccer League as Shepparton United again collected all three points, while Shepparton South left McEwen Reserve empty handed.

Age is just a number at United with five girls younger than 16 featuring for Rocky Papalia’s side and the youthful squad is dominating this season’s competition.

‘‘It is good, it bodes well for the future and the girls are really enjoying playing with a mix of age groups,’’ Papalia said.

United beat fourth-placed Eaglehawk on Sunday 4-0, with Megan McFarland, Sophie Papalia, Taylah Zito and Sarah Loverso scoring for the visitors.

‘‘It was a good win, Megan opened the scoring in the first half and we went on to kick three more in the second,’’ Papalia said.

United also had two goals disallowed in the first half, but Papalia urged his players to continue on playing their brand of football.

‘‘It was not going our way at first, but I told the girls to continue on with what they know and the game will fall in our favour and it did,’’ Papalia said.

Briarna Fichera and Pippa Grabham, both 13, have been instrumental recently for United, while Papalia elaborated on his side’s brilliant defensive record.

United has conceded just four goals in 12 games this season, with the competition’s next best sitting on 16.

‘‘I have a few defensively-minded girls down back that we have to give credit to, they hold their position well and I think they are doing an exceptional job,’’ Papalia said.

United sits three points clear on top of the ladder, while Shepparton South is in fifth position.

Uwe Paffrath’s South lost 2-0 at home to Epsom, with the visitors scoring either side of the break.

Caitlin Green found the back of the net in 13th minute, before Tara Thomas scored seven minutes after the restart to take her season tally to 22 goals.

South has been inconsistent lately having won, drawn and lost in its past five matches to sit one point behind Eaglehawk in fifth position.

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