Flying Mullet Pāpāmoa and Ōtūmoetai have secured a slight advantage in the title race in The Soccer Shop WaiBOP Premiership.
Both teams were unscathed from the weekend's round of the premiership with both teams taking a victory.
Pāpāmoa won, expectedly, at Safer Team Te Puke United, while Ōtūmoetai edged Waikato Unicol in the weekend's match of the round. The shock result was ninetyblack Taupō not only losing their second match in a row, but doing so at home to second from bottom Ngaruawahia United.
It was largely plain sailing for Pāpāmoa as they beat Te Puke 6-0. After remaining scoreless for nearly 20 minutes, goals from Liam Molloy, Alex Wilson and Juan Pedro Irazabal in a seven minute spell effectively broke Te Puke's resistance. Irazabal grabbed his second not long after half time, before Callum Glover and Colm Kenny completed the rout.
It was a closer battle at Fergusson Park between two of the Premiership's top four, with Ōtūmoetai taking the spoils following their 2-1 victory. An almost goalless first 45 minutes turned in the host's favour as the half time whistle neared when captain, Scott Reid, struck to change the game. Krishaant Singh got Unicol back on level terms seven minutes after the beak, but the match didn't stay that way for long. Trey Stewart restored Ōtūmoetai's lead and the hosts saw the game out to stay in touch with Pāpāmoa, while also helping themselves to a handy advantage over the teams below them.
One thing you can guarantee from matches involving the 2019 version of Taupō is goals. But after winning nine in a row, they have now lost two straight with their 4-3 reverse to Ngaruawahia at Crown Park on Saturday being potentially the Premiership's upset of the season so far.
A Green Machine side that had scored only eight times in 12 games prior to this match were three up inside the first half hour. John Stapleford struck twice, either side of a Nirav Prakash goal. Taupo mounted something of a comeback, with Jordan Lamb and Finlay Smith reducing the deficit by halftime. Ngaruawahia held their lead through the bulk of the second half, before extending their advantage with just over quarter of an hour to go thanks to Khalid Omar. Jordan Lamb scored again for Taupo with five minutes left, before Ismal Awad, for the visitors, and Byron Thessman both saw red in a heated finish.
Tauranga Blue Roves consolidated fifth spot after a 2-0 win at Gisler Architects Te Awamutu. The other games both ended level. Sok Ven's first half double gave Melville United a two goal advantage at the break before West Hamilton United mounted a comeback that saw the match end 2-2. Mitchell Dodd, just after the hour, and Mathew Sawyer inside the final 15 minutes, scored the goals that shared the spoils. Josh Oliver came off the bench to equalise for Tauranga Boys' four minutes into added time after Nicolas San Martan had given Comag Matamata Swifts a long-overdue lead 20 minutes from time in a match that ended 1-1.