Inglewood United secured a 5-2 come-from-behind victory against Joondalup United thanks to hat-trick hero Kenny Keogh at Perth Plasterboard Centre Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
It was Keogh’s first start since round two after recovering from a hamstring injury and he was happy to secure the three points.
“We had to work hard for the points, they are a physical team but I thought we overran them in the second half and I thought our fitness shone through,” he said.
Inglewood coach Taki Nicolaidis said Keogh was outstanding but needed some encouragement.
“Today has been the story of our season, we play some really good football and one mistake costs us a goal, but I asked for a response at half time and I got it which is pleasing, and hopefully that’s the kick start to our season.” he said.
“Kenny was great for the first 20 minutes, but drifted out of the game. I had a few words with him at half time and he got his second wind, but credit to him he’s been working hard to get his fitness levels up and he was in the right place at the right time to score a hat-trick.”
The coach said the young players who come off the bench expose the talent at the club, and it bodes well for the future.
“These youngsters have a big future,” he said. “We’ve got to keep giving them the opportunity, and their performances today will give me a few selection headaches next week.”
The home side made the perfect start and went ahead on six minutes. Keogh made space down the right and his cross picked out Alex Salmon who headed home at the back post.
Joondalup then settled into the game; a ball over the top caught Inglewood square at the back sending Howles clear, before he held off his marker and finished low past Alex Dunn.
Joondalup hit the front moments later. Matthew Sparrow’s corner was headed back across goal and Howles got in front of his marker to fire home from close-range.
Inglewood’s pressure in the second-half was rewarded with the equaliser on 69 minutes. Barrera’s through-ball picked out the overlapping Jason Colli on the right whose cross found Keogh, striking the ball past James Bosdet.
Inglewood then regained the lead as a low cross from Colli was turned home by Keogh.
The home side added a fourth six minutes from time, when Brian Woodall was brought down by Greg Pellow with referee Adam Fielding pointing straight to the spot. Salmon stepped up and sent Bosdet the wrong way.
With three minutes to go Inglewood produced a fantastic team goal to put the result beyond doubt. Salmon and Woodall combined down the left as Woodall cut the ball back to Keogh who fired home to complete his hat-trick.
In the other match on Sunday afternoon, Armadale put four past Mandurah City at Securitas Protect Stadium winning 4-2.
On Saturday, Perth Glory and Stirling Lions shared the points with a nil all score line, ECU Joondalup made light work of Cockburn City winning 4-0 at Dalmatinac Park and Floreat Athena ended Subiaco’s solid start to the season with a 4-1 away win at Rosalie Park.
In the top of the table clash, Sorrento took all three points at home with a 2-1 victory against Perth, while Bayswater City came from behind to beat Balcatta 2-1 at Grindleford Reserve.