Westside Strikers are starting to find their groove in FFV state league 4 west.

With the side is new to this level, so it was always going to take some time to make an impact.

After a slow start, the Strikers have claimed points in their past three games, including their first two wins of the season.

Strikers president Sam Raniolo said he was reasonably happy with how the season was going.

This season is a different challenge for the Strikers, who dominated state league 5 last year.

“We are starting to gel a bit more,” he said. “We have seven new players this season, so it does take a while for everyone to get to know each other.

“State 4 is a hard league and we’re only two years old with the senior side.

“The last few weeks we’ve seen some good signs.”

Raniolo said that in the first few weeks there had been too many draws, with the side unable to turn them into wins.

He said that was something the players needed to work on.

On Saturday, though, the Strikers turned in their best performance of the season by beating Golden Plains 5-0.

Raniolo said it was a good match for the side.

“We were 4-0 up at half-time, but in the second half took the foot off the pedal a little bit,” he said. “We did, though, make a few changes and gave everyone a run.”

Westside Strikers have moved up to fourth spot, with a 2-3-1 record.

They will face their biggest test so far this week when they take on undefeated ladder leader Surf Coast.

“Surf Coast up there will be a hard game,” Raniolo said. “It’s a good challenge and good indication of what we have to do and we will take on that challenge.”

The Strikers’ junior sides took part in a gala day on Sunday in which they faced Williamstown junior teams.

Williamstown won the first perpetual trophy, winning 13 matches to the Strikers’ 12.

In other state league 4 games, Spring Hills had a tough day against Surf Coast, losing 4-0.

Surf Coast scored twice in each half.

The Stallions slip to fifth spot, one point behind Westside Strikers.

In state league 5 west, Melton Phoenix suffered a 1-0 loss to Maidstone United.

The Phoenix currently sit in eighth with seven points.

In state league 1 north-west, Caroline Springs George Cross’ winning streak was halted at two wins.

The Georgies were no match for Altona City, losing 3-1.

Alex Dimond was the scorer for the Georgies, who are eighth on the ladder with two wins for the season.

This week they will face Brimbank Stallions.


Tara Murray