Lightning make cracking start to season

LODDON Mallee Lightning’s representative soccer teams got off to a flying start to their summer season last weekend, winning four of their matches against the Northern All-Stars in the Victorian Champions League.

It was the girls who flew the flag for the Lightning, winning all of their matches in impressive style.

The under-13 girls won 2-1, with Annie Bissinella and Amelia Compagnaro the scorers, while the under 15 girls won a 5-4 thriller with the All-Stars.

Nicole Ford scored two goals for the Loddon Mallee, while Annabel Martin and Emma Webb also found the back of the net.

It was a terrific win for the home side, which was down 3-0 before staging a terrific comeback.

The Lightning’s most impressive win, however, was in the under-17 girls’ match.

Kicking into a strong breeze at Epsom-Huntly restricted Loddon Mallee’s scoring in the first half, but they took full advantage to turn a 1-0 lead at the break into a 6-0 drubbing.

Eaglehawk star Paige Conder was the hero for the Lightning, bagging four goals in a brilliant captain’s game.

The over-age player had plenty of support in the midfield and out wide from Jess Pitts, Kayla Arkinstall, Bridget Woods, Natalie Von Wirtz Matthews and Shania Cromb.

The All-Stars team, which comprises players from the Darebin, Whittlesea, Banyle and Mitchell municipalities, was no match for the Lightning.

Joining Conder on the scoring sheet were Cromb and Pitts, but coach Darryl Brown praised all of his squad in what was a fine team effort.

While the girls had plenty to smile about, it was a tougher day for the boys. The under-14 boys were the only team to beat the Northern All-Stars.

In that match, Wee La Mor Klay scored two goals in the 5-1 win.

Others to find the back of the net were Alex Caldow, Peter Marziano and Oscar Perez.

The under-13 boys managed to score two goals, but couldn’t defend well enough to win, going down 5-2.

Flynn Perez and Brenton Urbaniak were the scorers for the Lightning.

The under-15 boys had the toughest match, losing 7-0, while the under-17 boys also conceded seven goals, but managed to save face by scoring two of their own.

Sam Farr and Mitchell Langenbacher were the scores for Loddon Mallee.

All Lightning teams will play  again this weekend, with a double-header in Thornbury.

Loddon Mallee will play Geelong Galaxy tomorrow and back-up against Gippsland Knights on Sunday.

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