Melton Phoenix has got reward for effort with its second win of the FFV state league 5 west season.

After dropping a match it could have won the previous round, the Phoenix hit back with a 1-0 win against Balmoral on Saturday.

Phoenix coach Mark Parnis said his players delivered when they needed to.

“It was a tough game,” he said. “We stood up to every challenge and could have easily scored another one or two goals. We got the result we wanted and we are travelling OK.”

Sergio Tapia was the goalscorer for the Phoenix.

Parnis said the early rounds were always challenging as he and the players got a read on the competition.

Melton Phoenix is one of five teams that have two victories from the opening three rounds.

“We’ve done pretty well … we’ve been competitive against all the sides we’ve played,” Parnis said. “We were a bit unfortunate to have had a loss – we could have had a win in that game.”

Melton’s start to the season looks even better when the number of injuries it’s dealing with is taken into account.

Parnis said the club had 13 players injured heading into round one, including eight from the senior team.

“We’re not trying to make it an issue,” he said. “We’ve put some young guys on the park and they have stood up quite well.

“Looking at the list, we might be three or four away from being full strength. Some will be out longer than others.”

Parnis said the key to the side’s success so far and ability to adjust to changes each week, had been the strong bond between the players.

He said everyone involved was on the same page, which made coaching a lot easier.

“Just to see how the young ones and the new ones have fitted in is really good,” he said. “The culture is good and there’s a good leadership group. The communication is really good between all the players.”

The Phoenix will this week face Barwon, before playing Deakin Ducks and Maidstone in the following weeks.

Parnis said all three matches would be tough.

In state league 4 west, Spring Hills suffered its first loss of the season, 3-1 to Bell Park. Blake D’Antino was the goalscorer for the Stallions.

Westside Strikers suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of North Melbourne Athletic. The loss is the Strikers’ first of the season. They drew their first two matches.

Caroline Springs George Cross remains winless in state league 1 north-west. On Saturday, the Georgies lost 3-2 to FC Clifton Hill.

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