Women’s League: Birkirkara march on

Birkirkara launched their final round commitments with a comfortable win over bottom side San Ġwann to maintain their six-point lead at the top of the MFA Women’s League. Second-place Mġarr United kept their title hopes alive with a victory over Kirkop United.

The Stripes scored eight goals without a reply in a victory that cements their leadership in this league. With five games left for the end of the season, the Stripes are in the driving seat to conquer their tenth championship. Melania Bajada’s side have now stretched their league unbeaten run to 63 games – six away from matching the domestic record.

Canadian forward Patricia Lamanna opened the score for Birkirkara – which goal was the 20th scored by a foreigner in this season’s campaign – and scored their seventh in the closing stages of the game, for a total of five goals in three outings since joining the Stripes during the winter transfer window.

Malta women’s international Alishia Sultana, who doubled the lead for the Stripes, produced a hat-trick as she has now joined Mġarr’s Francesca Chircop at the top of the league’s scoring charts with 13 goals.

Sultana’s hat-trick was the 10th registered during the 2021/2022 season, so far.

The other three goals were scored by Mariah Sciberras, Gabriella Zahra and Ruth Steer-Chetham – who joined the club during the summer.

B’KARA Isabel Sanchez Bacaicoa, Gabriella Zahra (Ileana Farrugia), Kimberly Parnis, Stephania Farrugia, Mariah Sciberras (Mariah Cardona), Alishia Sultana, Veronique Mifsud (Ruth Steer-Chetham), Yasmeen Marie Bajada (Izabella Camilleri), Charlene Zammit, Valentina Rapa (Martina Fenech), Patricia Mary Lamanna.

SAN GWANN Alayah Borg, Annabelle Rapa, Lara Mae Vella, Daniela Camilleri (Mariah Micallef), Lynn Mifsud, Rhea Borg, Yulya Carella, Melissa Galea, Sarah Cioffi, Janice Spiteri, Yana Scicluna (Thresa Scicluna).

Referee: Justin Camilleri

Two first-half goals paved the way for Mġarr to chalk up their 10th win of the season after beating Kirkop 3-1.

Abigail Camilleri and Jasmine Vella Turner scored the two goals in the opening 45 minutes before Rebecca Bajada sealed the win with a third on minute 73.

Kathryn Ellul did pull one back for Kirkop but Mġarr managed to control their two-goal lead to try and keep the heat on leaders Birkirkara.

MGARR Patricia Ebejer, Abigail Camilleri, Maia Melanie Debono, Keeva Caoimhe Camilleri (Juliana Dogg Onnudottir Chipa), Francesca Chircop (Nicole Grixti), Angelique Schembri, Rodiana Borg, Jasmine Vella Turner, Leanne Cefai (Daniela Said Ebejer), Rebecca Bajada (Leslye Nicole Espinel Bautista), Brenda Borg.

KIRKOP Maria Abdilla, Ingrid Psaila, Celine Galea, Sarah Urpani, Kathryn Ellul, Aleksandra Georgieva (Maria Ibrahim), Federica Zahra (Mariah Schembri), Alessia Caschetto, Yolande Attard, Marie Claire Cilia (Jeanelle Falzon), Rodianne Zerafa.

Referee: Aidan Aquilina

Meanwhile, Raiders Lija bounced back to winning ways after hitting Mtarfa for seven. The three points allowed Denis Guerra’s side to join Swieqi United in third on 22 points.

Michela Bonello Ghio and Miriana Conti opened a two-goal lead for Raiders in the first 45 minutes. Leah Ayres extended their lead just after the interval, netting the league’s 200th goal in this campaign.

Sabrin Blihi followed with a fourth – the 20th goal scored by a substitute this season. Sarah Caruana, Eva Codermartz and Rebecca Vella added three more goals to wrap up Raiders’ big win.

MTARFA Dorienne Grech (Justine De Giorgio), Lorna Maria Cassar, Sarah Cassar, Kristine Camilleri (Sarah Cassar Dymond), Brooke Zarb (Corine Deguara), Victoria Sciberras, Kelsey Ann Vella, Shania Marie Spiteri, Rebecca Zammit, Chanelle Agius, Kaia Piccinino (Krystle Calleja)(Julianne Camilleri).

RAIDERS Giulia D’Antuono, Rebecca Vella, Georgiana Mifsud (Larissa Debono), Sarah Caruana, Monique Sultana, Miriana Conti, Gaia Antonelli (Sabrin Blihi), Michela Bonello Ghio (Nell Zarb Cousin), Leah Alice Ayres (Eva Codermatz), Clara Padilla Chozas, Anna Aloisio.

Referee: Ranald Portelli