Ten-man Joondalup United sought revenge from their midweek Westfield FFA Cup loss to Perth SC, coming from behind to win 3-2 at Percy Doyle Reserve on Saturday in the PS4 NPLWA.
Joondalup coach Nick Jennings said his side had demonstrated great character to come back from two goals while also being a player down.
“We are a small club in a new league, so character is important to us but I also think we have a lot of quality,” Jennings said.
“The depth of our squad is fantastic, they are not well known players in WA but they all work hard, hold their own and they have good skills.”
Perth’s Harley Orr opened the scores in the 16th minute with a moment of brilliance, lobbing the keeper from outside the penalty area.
Three minutes later his teammate Nicholas Ambrogio doubled their lead, latching onto a rebound from Niccolo Sabatini’s attempt.
Just before half time, substitute Mike Kenny kept Joondalup in the game with a well-timed volley catching keeper Francis Soale off his line.
The home side were reduced to 10 men in the 69th minute when Ross Edwards was sent off for his second yellow.
Joondalup showed no signs of dampened spirits as Alex Wild equalised in the 73rd minute, knocking in a rebound in the penalty box.
Two minutes later Arran Maplestone’s stunning free-kick curled into the near post, putting Joondalup in front.
Perth’s frustration showed as they were reduced to nine men when Rocco Pizzata and Orr received second yellows and were sent off within minutes of each other.
Perth coach Ramon Falzon said his had side started well but their concentration dropped while leading.
“We were sitting a bit too comfortably with a 2-0 lead, and I never expected to lose 3-2, finishing off the game with nine men,” he said.
“Once a player drops his concentration you can’t get it back, so it was entirely our fault.”
Earlier on Saturday, Floreat Athena upset Sorrento to go top of the table with a 2-1 win at E&D Litis Stadium thanks to a double from Jonathan Stynes, who scored either side of Sean Canham’s 51st-minute goal for the Gulls.
In Saturday’s other results, Subiaco climbed to 11th with a 2-0 win over Perth Glory at Rosalie Park, ECU Joondalup beat Mandurah City 3-1, Armadale and Bayswater City drew 0-0 and Cockburn City and Inglewood United drew 2-2.
Balcatta beat Stirling Lions 2-1 at Macedonia Park in Sunday’s local derby.