Newcastle Jets Women claimed their first win at home since November 2014 and firmly entrenched themselves in the Westfield W-League's top four after a solid performance against the previously undefeated Perth Glory Women.
A goal from the penalty spot to American import Jen Hoy in the 48th minute was enough to claim all three points in the Jets’ first home game of the season.
It was the visitors however that were unlucky not to take the lead in the opening two minutes when Vanessa Di Bernardo struck the woodwork from long range. Moments later and disaster struck for the Jets as Kelsey Wys fell awkwardly on her right knee after going up to pluck a Glory long ball out of the air. Back-up keeper Claire Coelho came on for her 9th Westfield W-League Appearance.
It didn’t seem to affect the Jets though, as Jenna Kingsley sped down the right side of the box and fired a shot back towards goal. The shot seemed to strike Glory defender Patricia Charalambous on the arm but referee Lara Lee waved the penalty appeals away.
In the 22nd minute Matilda Sam Kerr almost put the Glory in the lead from her head, but after the ball ricochet around in the box, it was cleared by Jets midfielder Clare Wheeler.
Kerr continued to probe down the right edge and caused plenty of headaches for the Jets defence, but Captain Gema Simon did a great job of smothering any crosses from the Glory winger.
The Jets had a wonderful chance of their own right on the stroke of half-time, as Arin Gilliland found space down the left side. The US import did all the hard work, reaching the by-line and cutting back a low cross. But, unfortunately for the home side the cross went behind Kingsley and ensured both sides would go into the break deadlocked.
After the break, it didn’t take long for the Jets to open their account. Kingsley, just as impressive on the Jets right edge as Kerr was on Perth’s right, took off down the right side of the box after a pinpoint through ball from Cassidy Davis. The Jets winger cut a cross towards striker Jen Hoy who was bundled over inside the six-yard box. Referee Lara Lee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot and the Jets’ US striker stepped up to take the penalty. Hoy made no mistake drilling it into the left corner and giving the Jets the lead with her first Westfield W-League goal.
Sophie Nenadovic came within a whisker of doubling the home side's lead when her free kick from next to the corner flag skimmed off the crossbar in the 54th minute.
But, it was Sam Kerr who would have the best chance from open play in the 74th minute when she cut down the left edge of the box, set up for the shot on her right foot and struck it straight at Jets keeper Claire Coelho.
Then the Jets were given chances to kill off the match, Sophie Nenadovic put her shot wide from long range, before substitute Rhali Dobson found space down the right side of the box and fired in a half-cross, half-shot which somehow missed the top left corner, and the onrushing Jenna Kingsley.
Glory were not going to die wondering, especially not striker Sam Kerr, who had one final chance to snatch a late draw for the visitors. A curling cross from the left found her at the back post, but Kerr couldn’t find the target as she headed to the right of goal in the 2nd minute of stoppage time.
After a hard-fought battle, the win means the Jets go top of the Westfield W-League ladder for the first time in season 2016/17.
Newcastle Jets 1 (Hoy (pen) 48’)
Perth Glory 0
McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle
Referee: Lara Lee
Newcastle Jets: 1.Kelsey WYS (gk) (20.Claire COELHO (gk) 12’), 2.Sophie NENADOVIC, 3.Elizabeth O'REILLY, 4.Megan OYSTER, 5.Arin GILLILAND, 6.Cassidy DAVIS, 7.Gema SIMON (c), 8.Emma STANBURY, 9.Jennifer HOY (10.Rhali DOBSON 65’), 17.Jenna KINGSLEY, 18.Clare WHEELER (13.Grace MACINTYRE 77’)
Substitutes not used: 19.Ashlee BRODIGAN
Yellow cards: Nil
Red cards: Nil
Perth Glory: 1.Melissa MAIZELS (gk), 2.Sarah CARROLL, 3.Kim CARROLL, 4.Alyssa MAUTZ, 5.Patricia CHARALAMBOUS (17.Natasha RIGBY 65’), 7.Nicole STANTON, 9.Rosie SUTTON, 10.Vanessa DIBERNARDO, (8.Shawn BILLAM 73’), 13. Jaymee GIBBONS (14.Caitlin DOEGLAS 52’), 20.Samantha KERR (c), 22.Arianna ROMERO
Substitutes not used: 18.Gabby DAL BUSCO (gk)
Yellow cards: Stanton 71’
Red cards: Nil