Tension rises in Victory League

It was the closest and most entertaining round of Victory League football so far with all games alive until the final whistle.

It was the closest and most entertaining round of Victory League football so far with all games alive until the final whistle.

Glenorchy Knights 2 (Jayden Hey 18- pen., George Kamano 60-) def. Kingborough Lions 1 (93- Joe Davis) (KGV Football Park) (HT 1-0) Glenorchy Knights secured their second win for the season over a bruised and battered Kingborough. It was a battle of two teams that had been competitive in recent fixtures but struggled to grind out results.

Kingborough had a difficult week, releasing central defender Nick Hill due to disciplinary issues and they were not helped with early injuries. Di Falco departed just 15 minutes in and was followed by their dangerous attacker Schuth who left the field just prior to half time with a hamstring injury.

The game had early drama with a collision between Schuth and McKenna bringing down the big gloveman. It looked as if Kingborough had taken first blood on 13 minutes when Collins headed toward goal from a corner but the referee ruled it didn-t cross the line. Schuth was again involved in the action, receiving a yellow for contesting the decision from the official.

Just minutes later Knights struck up the other end, Cuthbertson brought down the pacey Marney in the box and Knights were awarded a penalty. Captain Jayden Hey stepped up and made no mistake to put the Knights up 1-0.

Glenorchy Knights made two changes at the hour mark and one paid immediate dividends. George Kamano was injected and scored with his first touch of the game to give Knights some breathing room. Joe Davis gave the Lions some hope in the 93rd but it was too little too late and the GlenorchyKnights prevailed 2-1.

South Hobart 2 (Mizael Linhares 12-, Chris Hunt 88-) def. Northern Rangers 1 (Billy Luate 81-) (Darcy Street) (HT 1-0) It was top of the table as the kings of the North travelled down to Darcy Street to face the kings of the South.

It took some time for both teams to settle, Rangers had some close early chances from Brassington corners denied with some scratchy clearances from South. South Hobart eventually worked their way on top with 2012 Vic Tuting medallist Shae Hickey dominant in midfield. It was Hickey that helped open the scoring, sending through speedy winger Mizael Linhares in spectacular fashion. Linhares darted into the box and coolly slot home into the bottom left corner to put his team up.

Shortly after Linhares departed for Hamlett with a suspected hamstring injury.

South Hobart continued to control the game but they were unable to find a second goal with the Rangers defence led by Ryan McCarragher holding strong under pressure.

Northern Rangers had fewer opportunities but looked dangerous on the counter attack, Nick Lanau-atkinson-s slick footwork and composure in traffic kept the visitors in it.

Northern Rangers emerged from the break with an improved work ethic and had the run of the play early but could not capitalise.

South Hobart clawed their way on top but despite chances to extend their lead through Hunt and Kanakaris it stayed at 1-0. Brassington very nearly scored a screamer to level things on a fast break away, his curling strike cannoned into the right arch of the goal frame and flew away from goal.

South continued to press but the Rangers defence continued to keep them at bay. Northern Rangers injected Luate and it worked wonders, volleying a long throw into goal after a failed attempt to clear from South to square it up at 1-1.

It was then a race against the clock for South Hobart to capture a winner but a stubborn Rangers defence absorbed the pressure well until former son Chris Hunt sunk the hearts of his former team mates, beating two players before rolling it into a vacant bottom right corner to win the game for South.

Olympia 1 (Seungyong Jin 88-) drew with Tilford Zebras 1(Aaron Cairns 23-) (Warrior Park) (HT 0-1) It was a true game of two halves with Olympia and Tilford Zebras playing out an entertaining 1-1 draw. Zebras started brightly with superstar Scotsman Aaron Cairns turning it on for his side.

Cairns opened the account for Zebras, following up an Engels thunderbolt to nudge it across the line after it slipped from the arms of the helpless Nester. It was opportunistic from Cairns and was reward for a consistent period of pressure from Zebras.

Zebras continued to press with McKeown, Cairns and Malcolm all firing off shots to test the Warriors defence but they could not extend their lead on the scoreboard.

The second half saw a different Warriors team emerge with the explosive Jin very nearly levelling it early only to be denied by a magnificent diving save from Norval.

Undy, Tsakiris and Jin all tested the Zebras gloveman but Norval stood strong and continued to stop promising Warrior strikes.

All the momentum was Olympia-s way and they put their dominance on the scoresheet when Jin streamed forward once more, this time striking a screamer long range goal into the bottom right corner.

Jin had a shot with seconds to go that banged off the bar and out of play, forcing the sides to share points.

Launceston City 2(Saeed Bin Sumaida 42-, 62-) def. by Devonport City 3 (Brody Denehey 7-, 94-, Brayden Mann 90-) (Mitsubishi Park 1) (HT 1-1) It was almost upset of the season as Devonport travelled to Launceston to take on the point-less City. No one gave City a look in against a Devonport team in form but Launceston City were far from easy beats, giving Devonport a scare, a late flurry of goals saving the Strikers.

It was three points Devonport needed to shoot ahead of the pack and keep the pressure on South Hobart but it looked like they were going to be City-s first victims of 2013.

Young winger Brody Denehey slotted a fantastic early goal and it looked like it was going to be another afternoon to forget for City. Devonport were on top but the Launceston defence held true and when Bin Sumaida scored on the edge of half time City were in with a shot of taking home their first result.

City-s striker Bin Sumaida, who has been their shining light in recent weeks, put them into uncharted territory, giving them their first lead for the season just beyond the hour mark. A lead they held for nearly half an hour, it looked certain City would claim at worst a point before Devonport got out of jail in swift style, slamming home two goals in four minutes to claim three points in the final minute of the game.

Launceston City were left to wonder what could have been but it was an impressive improvement, particularly considering their last meeting was a 7-1 defeat at the hands of the Strikers.