Craigieburn City’s hope of adding a second piece of silverware to the cabinet is over in FFV state league 5.
After claiming the state league 5 north title in only its second season, Craigieburn bowed out of a finals series on Saturday.
City drew west division winner Laverton Park, with the winner advancing to the grand final.
Craigieburn drew first blood and led 1-0 at half-time.
Laverton Park, which won 17 games during the regular season, found an equaliser in the second half. Scores were level at the end of regular time and the match was decided on penalties.
Laverton Park ended the deadlock, to win 4-3 on penalties. It now faces East Brighton United, which defeated Sandown Lions, 4-1 in the other final.
For Craigieburn, it’s an end to what has been one of its most dominant seasons in history. Craigieburn won 19 games, had one draw and one loss. It scored 138 goals and only conceded 18 goals for the season.
Meanwhile, Lalor United will remain in state league 4 next season after losing to Sebastopol Vikings in its play-off match.
The two sides finished second in their state league 4 divisions and faced each other for a shot at Fawkner, which finished third last in state league 3 north-west.
The winner of that game will be promoted to state league 3 north-west next year.
On Saturday, Vikings and United were drawn 1-1 at half-time.
Kingsley Njoku scored the first half goal for United.
The Vikings had the better of the second half, scoring twice, to claim a 3-2 win.
It’s a disappointing end to the season for United, which would have earned automatic promotion if it had not been docked six points for a melee earlier in the season.
With that penalty, United finished three points behind Boorondara-Carey Eagles which claimed the state league 4 north title.
While the FFV play-offs and finals got under way on Saturday, the state’s best players were recognised at the FFV Gold Medal night on Friday.
Hume City goal keeper Michael Weier was named NPL Victoria goal keeper of the year.
City skipper Nick Hegarty was City’s best in the votes for the top honour, the Victoria Gold Medal.
Hegarty, who won the award last year, finished fifth, 26 votes behind the winner, Massimo Murdocca.