BROADMEADOW coach Ruben Zadkovich has high expectations on Mitch Oxborrow, but even he was surprised with how dominant the former Jets, Glory and Roar player was first-up for his side on Sunday.
Oxborrow scored twice and provided the ball in for an own goal in a 4-2 victory over the Newcastle Jets Youth at Magic Park, helping Broadmeadow climb to second spot on 16 points (+13 goals) after round nine.
The 23-year-old played six games with Broadmeadow last season before gaining a contract with the Roar. He returned this week focused on helping Magic secure Northern NSW NPL silverware.
Oxborrow’s last A-League start was in January and Zadkovich was surprised to see the midfielder hit the ground running.
“He still does things that most players, not just in this league, but in this country, can’t do,” Zadkovich said. “It’s just about playing him in a role that suits him, that’s attacking and can give him freedom to do those things.
“When he comes in with me, he just seems to light up. It was really nice to seem him step straight in. He played a lot better than I thought he would have after not playing for a while.”
Joseph O’Connor put Magic ahead with an own goal off Oxborrow’s cross in the 17th minute. Oxborrow beat everyone with a corner kick two minutes later.
Jet Kent Harrison produced a quality strike for 2-1 in the 33rd before Justin Broadley struck in the 43rd for Magic. Oxborrow finished a one-on-one chance off James Virgili’s work in the 59th and Cai Tipaldo smashed home an 88th-minute goal for the visitors
At Jack McLaughlan Oval, a clever finish from Luke Vallone gave Adamstown a 1-0 upset over Edgeworth, lifting Rosebud to sixth on 11 points and dropping the Eagles (16, +5) from first to fourth.
Vallone chipped keeper Nate Cavaliere from close range after a ball from Chris Berlin. It sealed a third win in a row for Adamstown, and coach Shane Cansdell-Sherriff said the turnaround came down to “just hard work”.
“I’ve said to them from the start that we’ve got to have that desire to want to get better, learn and listen and I can’t fault the boys at all,” he said. “They are giving me 100 per cent, I’m getting everyone to training each week and the atmosphere is great.”
At Lisle Carr Oval, Charlestown regained the ladder lead with a 2-0 victory over cellar-dwellers Valentine. Scott Smith scored with a deflected free kick in the 57th minute and a penalty for handball in the 65th to push Charlestown to 19 points.
On Saturday night, Maitland (16, +10) moved to third with a 2-0 win over Lake Macquarie at Macquarie Field. Josh Dutton-Black struck in the 61st minute and Liam Thornton scored with a header in the 85th.
Earlier, Hamilton moved to 10 points and seventh with a 2-1 victory over the fifth-placed Lambton Jaffas (12 points) at Edden Oval.
Ryan Griffiths put Lambton in front in the eighth minute with a header from a corner. Simon Mooney did the same off a cross in the 13th to equalise before Scott Pettit scored in the 43rd.