Savoy claims top spot

SAVOY UNDFEATED: Ben Higginbottom, pictured in action in the first home game at the sports precinct at the end of April, sealed the deal for Savoy on Sunday, kicking their second and winning goal orchestrated by Carlo Librino.
SAVOY UNDFEATED: Ben Higginbottom, pictured in action in the first home game at the sports precinct at the end of April, sealed the deal for Savoy on Sunday, kicking their second and winning goal orchestrated by Carlo Librino.

Round 4 RESULTS

SAVOY 2 WA.Raptors 1

West Beach 6 Rowe Park 4

Munno Para 5 Seaford 1

Southern Knights 1 Noarlunga Utd 2

Para Hills East 9 Macedonia Utd 0

Round 5 FIXTURES

Noarlunga Utd v SAVOY (night)

Macedonia Utd v West Beach

Seaford v Para Hills East

Southern Knights v Munno Para

Rowe Park v WA.Raptors

SAVOY UNDEFEATED AND TOP

Savoy played a responsible and panic-less brand of soccer before executing an exciting finish to last Sunday afternoon's game when they overpowered nemesis opponent West Adelaide Raptors to win 2-1 at Kingston Gardens in a huge second half response that yielded two impressive and unanswered goals.

After Sunday's win, the Vincent DeGioia coached Green and Whites remain undefeated to now top the Division 2 league ladder after four completed rounds of amateur soccer in what continues to be a bold display by the locals in the SAASL.

Sunday's WA Raptors encounter presented Savoy with another tough away game its third in as many as four weeks of soccer and there is every reason to suggest that the Port Pirie team is travelling enormously well for coach DeGioia even though the Green and Whites will be on the road again this Saturday night when it plays Noarlunga.

Meanwhile, the opening and only goal scored by the Raptors was a Savoy mistake that had travelling coach Vincent DeGioia wildly venting his disgust as the Adelaide outfit punished the visitors to take a 1-0 lead into the halftime break on a fine afternoon that supplied some strong barracking from both sides.

But it was Savoy's hunger in attack when it became obvious that it could easily pull off a win against the bullish John Pires coached team and it was Leonard Habonimana who missed the West Beach game the previous week that scored with a well taken 75th minute strike that levelled the game to put last Sunday's contest up for grabs.

The WA Raptors coach after the game explained how much more disciplined the Savoy team had been all afternoon compared to his outfit who had made heaps scoring chances and had found the Green and Whites' defence hard to negotiate.

The round four fixture in Adelaide against the Raptors was what everyone expected with the home team coming off a big 6-2 win over Noarlunga United and Savoy having settled for a 1-1 draw against West Beach in its first home game at the sports precinct.

In the meantime, it was the Raptors that looked good in the opening half and applied offensive pressure on the visitors mainly through home skipper Spero Koulianos, but apart from the AJ Sabamina 40th minute error that led to a goal and put the Kingston Gardens team 1-0 up at halftime there was little between the two.

The second period became a struggle with both teams having moments in attack without scoring where Savoy goalkeeper Nathan Brook was seen at his best time and again protecting his goals with some excellent keeping that was enough to spur his team to the eventual win result.

Savoy's Leonard Habonimana started the ball rolling for the Green and Whites when he latched onto a sharp Carlo Librino through ball that the Savoy regular scorer nicely curled around keeper Jack Burge for 1-1 even though club-linesman had raised his flag.

But senior referee Kim Missinis was quick to dismiss the flag call as the Raptors appeared stunned by the Savoy goal before the visitors went on a short rampage that should have seen another goal when DeGioia's players ran strongly in attack with snappy goal scoring chances coming right, left and centre of the goals after Librino had hit the right post.

But the Raptors fought back making further opportunities only to see Brook feature highly in the Savoy goals and stamping his best display for the team.

But as one would expect it was prime mover and Savoy's go-to player Carlo Librino that again was involved when finding Ben Higginbottom on his right and outside the Raptors box that he hit low and hard beating Burge in the home goals for a very late winner and an exciting finish that had the Green and Whites in ecstasy and winning 2-1.

Two great goals on a perfect afternoon that saw Savoy turn a one goal deficit into a 2-1 win in another away game that DeGioia's team excelled and deny the rated Raptors in avery exciting finish on Sunday.

BEST PLAYERS

Savoy: C.Librino, N.Brook, D.Keain, AJ.Sabimana.

WA. Raptors: S.Kpoulianos, J.Margaritis, J.Burge.

GOAL SCORERS

Savoy: L.Habonimana, B.Higginbottom.

West Beach: S.Koulianos.

SAVOY RESERVES

The Savoy Reserves lost admirably last Sunday against the WA Raptors when it could not haul in the home team going down 2-3 at Kingston Gardens after it trailed just narrowly 0-1 at halftime.

The second half went into a goalscoring contest when both teams traded goals and although Jayden Gonzalez and Rickie Wallace found the net for Savoy so did the Raptors that also scored two more goals as the home team managed to edged out an improved Savoy Reserves display.

SAVOY'S OPENING 5 LEAGUE GAMES

Rd.1 MUNNO PARA 1 SAVOY 3

Rd.2 PARA HILLS EAST 0 SAVOY 2

Rd.3 SAVOY 1 WEST BEACH 1

Rd.4 WA. RAPTORS 1 SAVOY 2

Rd.5 NOARLUNGA UTD v SAVOY

PREVIEW

SAVOY AWAY FOR NIGHT GAME

Savoy will be at Wilfred Taylor Reserve this Saturday night for its round five encounter against Noarlunga United in a new timeslot for the Green and Whites at a once familiar past surroundings for the Vincent DeGioia coached team.

Savoy, that now heads the Division 2 ladder with three wins and a draw, take on a Noarlunga outfit that sits in fourth spot and has won two, drawn and lost one in another contest that locals will need to play smart under lights and in conditions that probably will not suit the travelling Green and Whites outfit.

Last week Savoy experienced a good 2-1 win against WA Raptors in Adelaide whereas the Lloyd Roberts coached Noarlunga defeated Southern Knights 2-1 and at the Wilfred Taylor venue the home team is expected to push the visitors in next Saturday's cold and tricky round five night encounter.

The Noarlunga outfit still plays the experienced David Foy and with forward Clayton Williams, midfielder Nick Davies, defender Jamie Miller and keeper Hamish Wilson reports suggest are playing some good soccer.

However, last Sunday it was clear just how invaluable Carlo Librino is to the Savoy combination with both goals scored against the Raptors expertly orchestrated by the gun team player in a contest that local keeper Nathan Brook played extremely well in.

Noarlunga led 1-0 at halftime and saw Nas Mehet-Gir and Brendan Scanlon make the scoring sheet while for Savoy it was Leonard Habonimana and Ben Higginbotom that hit the net to give Savoy its third win of the season after four rounds completed.

Defensively, Savoy have Domenic Keain and Rhys Gillett in top form, while AJ Sabimana is nearing his peak and John Librino and Darren Clinton continue to do all the correct soccer acts exploiting their opponents down the centre of the park.

For Savoy coach DeGioia, Saturday night's Wilfred Taylor Reserve encounter is just another his team needs to conquer in what has been a near-perfect soccer season to date.

SAVOY RESERVES

The Savoy Reserves are still in search of its first season win and in Saturday's 5pm kick-off the John Smith coached outfit will be again attempting to get on the winning scoreboard.

With Savoy losing 2-3 last week, Noarlunga grabbed its first win of the season when it defeated Southern Knights 3-2 away and should the visitors find a better selection and again improve it can win against Wilfred Taylor team in its late afternoon game.