NNSW Football: Eagles strike late to beat Bentleigh Greens and soar into next round of national competition

STAR: Keanu Moore scored Edgeworth's opening goal and was a constant threat in the 3-1 win over Bentleigh Greens on Saturday. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

STAR: Keanu Moore scored Edgeworth's opening goal and was a constant threat in the 3-1 win over Bentleigh Greens on Saturday. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

TEENAGE replacement Aden Gardner scored twice in extra time to clinch Edgeworth a gripping 3-1 win over Victorian champions Bentleigh Greens in Melbourne on Saturday.

The Eagles’ win was the first by a Northern NSW representative in the three years of the National Premier League play-offs.

They will now meet Perth, who smashed Devonport 6-1, in the next round in the West Australian capital next Saturday.

“I couldn’t be more proud of them,” delighted coach Damian Zane said. “To cop a late goal was gut-wrenching. But the boys managed to put that aside and run over the top of the them in extra-time.”

After a scoreless first half in which the home side dominated possession, Keanu Moore put Edgeworth ahead in the 55th minute with a neat finish.

The visitors hung on until a wonder strike by Bentleigh substitute Jonny McLean with two minutes remaining.

As they have done all year, the Eagles dug deep.

Gardner beat a defender to a cross and angled a header which bounce inside the right post in the 99th minute.

The 18-year-old then ensured the win with a clinical finish in the 109th minute.

After being the first Northern NSW team to progress to the round of 16 of the FFA Cup, the Eagles are now the first to progress to the final four of the nation premier league play-offs

In the inaugural year in 2014, Weston were knocked out by Palm Beach.

Last year, the Eagles also went down to Queensland opponents, Moreton Bay.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop