Stirling Lions boosted their top four aspirations with an emphatic 3-0 home win over Cockburn City at Macedonia Park on Saturday.
Teeboy Kamara’s brace and David Micevski’s delightful finish ensured a comfortable day at the office for Rob Milevski’s charges.
The end result would have been more comprehensive had Micevski’s brother, Daniel, brought his shooting boots.
The diminutive attacker spurned four guilt-edged opportunities on a day City were there for the taking.
Despite seeing his side miss a host of opportunities, the Lions boss was happy with the three points, especially with other results on Saturday – Inglewood United taking over at the top after a 2-1 win over Bayswater City, while Floreat Athena defeated Subiaco – increased the competition for a top four finish.
“I’m pretty happy with that performance and I thought it could have been seven or eight today,” Milevski said.
“It was a solid performance all around and a great way to honour a club legend, Ross McGinn, who we held a minute’s silence for prior to the game.
“We knew it was an important game because we knew one of the top two would falter. At the start of the season the target was top four football and at the minute we’re in the hunt, looking to win the premiership title.
“We just have to keep the momentum going. The boys were really good today, it was an excellent performance.”
Just two days after earning a Westfield FFA Cup Round of 32 draw at Melbourne Knights and having earned a confidence-boosting 1-1 draw at reigning champions, Bayswater City, last time out, Cockburn produced a performance to forget.
“I thought we were reactionary today. I thought we were a bit intimidated. I thought Stirling were very good and dominated all over the park,” said Cockburn coach Scott Miller.
On a disappointing playing surface, the first half took time to get going and once it did it was Stirling who looked the most likely to open the scoring as David Micevski and Kamara both forced Luke Radonich into saves in the opening 20 minutes.
City almost took the lead on 23 minutes when neat combination passing on the edge of the box involving Nathan De Abreu, Julian Teles and David Arya opened the door for Ruben Triasto to try a shot.
John Perkins made the save and Stirling broke immediately down the right for Kamara to nod in his ninth of the season.
Cockburn responded well with Teles heading just wide before Cameron Edwards stung the palms of Perkins from distance.
The home side started the second half in perfect fashion with David Micevski proving fleet of foot to open space in the box before curling a stunning shot over Radonich and into the corner of the net.
Daniel Micevski then came to the fore, missing out on an eight minute hat-trick as he was denied three times by Radonich before, on 78 minutes, he missed a sitter – scuffing Lucas De Lima’s cross wide from just 6m.
Those missed chances were unimportant at the end as Kamara made it 3-0 with six minutes to go when he fired home Brodie Martin’s incisive pass.
Stirling Lions 3 (Kamara 24min, 84, David Micevski 47)
Cockburn City 0
Saturday, July 2, 2016
Macedonia Park, 3pm
Referee: Tom Dowle
Assistant referees: John Taran and Adrian Liechti
Stirling Lions: 1. John PERKINS, 3. Lucas DE LIMA (2. Bleron MAMUDI, 86), 5. Graham DORAN, 7. Milorad VUJACIC (Cpt, 4. Balmo QUA QUA, 46), 8. David SESAY, 9. Jamie GIBSON (6. Brodie MARTIN, 60), 10. Daniel MICEVSKI, 11. David MICEVSKI, 15. Shane CASSIDY, 16. Mathiang MATHIANG, 17. Teeboy KAMARA.
Substitutes not used: 13. William KESSEL, 20. Connor CAMPBELL.
Cockburn City: 1. Luke RADONICH, 2. Nathan DE ABREU, 3. Joshua KUSER, 4. Euen GRANT (Cpt), 6. Ruben TRISTAO, 7. Ali GHOLAMI (11. Harry O’BRIEN, 46), 8. Cameron EDWARDS, 10. David ARYA, 14. Julian TELES (18. Andrew EMSAVANA, 56), 16. Daniel DOLS (17. Jesse LAZZARO, 77), 13. Blake ADAMS.
Substitutes not used: 23. Ben RADONICH.
Yellow cards: De Abreu, 27; Adams, 54; O’Brien, 69.