They may be the Women’s Premier League champions an unbeaten all season but Queens Park were made to work for every bit of their 2-0 win over Fremantle City at Wauhop Park on Sunday.
Queens Park, who also lifted the State Cup last weekend, were tested all afternoon by a spirited Fremantle side but took all three points thanks to second-half goals from Tia Stonehill and Jenna Onions.
“For the girls to have wrapped up the league the way we did early on was really pleasing,” Queens Park coach Ben Anderton said.
“Today wasn’t our best game but it shows the character of the girls to come away with the win.
“I told the girls at half-time, we’ve really got to sharpen up on the simple things and the goals will come – fortunately enough the goal did come which made the girls settle a little bit more and we came away with the win.”
Coming into the game off the back of four straight wins, Fremantle started strongly and were bossing the midfield battle.
It took until the 25th minute for the first shot of the game, however, winger Emma Gautrey blazing over.
Just four minutes later, City should have taken the lead as forward Mikayla Lyons spurned a glorious opportunity after being set up by Gautrey.
The champions took a while to find their stride and it was over half-an-hour before they registered their first shot on goal as Bec Bennett went closest during a first half of few opportunities.
It was a different story after the break. Queens Park came out with more intent and almost found themselves in front five minutes after the restart but Sadie Lawrence headed over the bar from a Jamie-Lee Gale corner.
The hosts also came out of the half-time break with a fire in the bellies and Aija Bent-Trinder’s lofted ball picked out Lyons, who was put off by a rushing Danielle Cornish and shot wide.
From the goal kick, Queens Park moved the ball up field and broke the deadlock as Stonehill headed home Gale’s inviting cross.
The goal was Stonehill’s third in two games against City after netting twice during a 5-1 win in Round 13.
The goal knocked the stuffing out of Fremantle as Katrina Jukic almost made it 2-0 with a curling shot that cannoned against the post.
To their credit, City dug in and would have found themselves level if it weren’t for Cornish’s superb save to deny Owen one-on-one.
The miss would prove costly and Queens Park wrapped up the game with a little under 20 minutes to play – super-sub Onions getting her name on the scoresheet to secure her side’s 17th win of the season.
Fremantle coach Thomas Richard said his side deserved more from the game.
“I think we deserved a draw today,” he said.
“We had a couple of really good chances, but they are a tough team.”
Fremantle City 0
Queens Park 2 (Stonehill 54min, Onions 71)
Sunday, September 9
Referee: Jess Byrd
Fremantle City: 1. Kaylin GEELHOED, 4. Courtney OWEN, 9. Chelsea JOHNSTONE, 15. Issy BRIDGER, 17. Corrine DENTON, 24. Emma GAUTREY, 26. Laura WALTMAN (30. Steph SIMMONDS 78), 27. Mikayla LYONS, 35. Steffi NADILO, 36. Evie MARCHETTI, 40. Aija BENT-TRINDER
Substitutes not used: 25. Josie CLOUD, 31. Ester WATTS, 38. Lynn DOMEN, 42. Peggy WOTHERSPOON
Yellow cards: Nil
Red Cards: Nil
Queens Park: 1. Danielle CORNISH, 2. Angelique STANNETT, 6. Jamie-Lee GALE, 8. Sadie LAWRENCE, 9. Tia STONEHILL (16. Jenna ONIONS 63), 10. Nicole CAMPBELL, 12. Kathryn SCHUBERT (20. Jamie DUNCANSON 71), 13. Bec BENNETT, 22. Jaymee GIBBONS, 23. Katrina JUKIC (19. Molly BOLTON 73), 28. Grace HENRY (31. Stacey LEARMONT 71)
Yellow cards: Nil
Red cards: Nil