Two match-winning late goals were the highlights of round nine of Central Victoria League One men's action at the weekend.
An injury time winner from Cameron Smith lifted Spring Gully to a stunning 4-3 victory over Epsom, while Shepparton United needed a 90th minute goal from Lewis Coyle to collect all three points against a gallant La Trobe University.
For the fourth time in nine games this season Epsom lost from a winning position.
The Scorpions took the lead three times against Spring Gully, but the young Reds showed great determination to break down the Epsom defence four times.
Cooper Arkinstall's sixth minute goal for Epsom was cancelled out three minutes later by Gully centre-back Ethan Chuter.
Lachlan Arkinstall put the home side back on top with his fourth goal of the season in the 28th minute.
Epsom maintained its lead until the 54th minute when Sydney Ndikumana slotted home Gully's second goal of the night.
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The Reds' joy didn't last long. Three minutes later Harley Richardson put Epsom back in control.
However, Epsom's defensive issues came back to haunt it.
Youngster Luke Wight levelled the scores for Gully with 15 minutes remaining in the match before another substitute, Cameron Smith, powered the Reds to victory with a goal in the 93rd minute.
"We had a plan for the areas that we could be positive with and it worked out in the end,'' Spring Gully coach Tony McQuillan said.
"It's a young side and we're learning every week. Even as a coach, I'm learning every week.
"We're trying to create an environment for these kids where they can really enjoy their football.
"I can't fault the players. They're doing a great job and they deserved the win."
Spring Gully is in sixth place on the ladder with 13 points at the halfway mark of the season, while the Scorpions are seventh with nine points.
La Trobe University went within a whisker of pinching at least one point from the highly-rated Shepparton United.
The Eagles took the lead via a goal from coach Ben Dreschler in the 39th minute.
They held their lead until 18 minutes into the second-half when Shepparton United skipper Mohammed Al-Gazaly found the back of the net.
Al-Gazaly proved to be a thorn in the Eagles' side again when he bobbed up in the 70th minute to score his second goal and give United the lead.
The Eagles responded strongly and drew level three minutes later when Bikram Lama Lo scored his second goal of the season.
Some strong defensive work looked set to give the Eagles a well-deserved point, but Coyle had other ideas when he broke the hearts of the home side in the 90th minute to make the final scoreline 3-2.
The three points lifted United to fourth place with 18 points, while La Trobe remained in eighth with six points.
Strathdale slipped to fifth place after falling 4-2 to the powerful Tatura on Sunday.
The Blues made a dream start when Jackson Clayton scored twice in four minutes to give his side a 2-0 lead after 16 minutes.
Two goals down on home soil was a position Tatura has rarely experienced, but the Ibises showed their class with a professional response.
The hero for Tatura was Zac Ferlauto, who scored a hat-trick.
The athletic midfielder had Tatura level before half-time before firing the Ibises into the lead two minutes into the second half.
Thomas Leech landed the knockout blow for the home side in the 67th minute.
Tatura goes into the long weekend break in second place with eight wins and one loss - three points behind the unbeaten Shepparton South.
South made it nine wins from nine games thanks to a 10-0 pounding of Strathfieldsaye Colts United.
William Keenan's outstanding form for South continued, scoring four goals to take his season tally to 21.
Sean Grant added a hat-trick and he has 13 goals for the 2022 campaign.
Eaglehawk is in third place with 18 points and disposing of Golden City 12-0.
The classy Jesse Parker scored four times in the opening 40 minutes of the match.
A hat-trick from striker Matt Breeze and two goals from Prince Quansah were other highlights for the Borough.
There were no women's matches at the weekend.
The men's and women's competitions resume on the weekend of June 18-19.
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