Melville into Chatham Cup semifinal
Melville United are one win away from making their second Chatham Cup final appearance.
Steve Williams' side upset Birkenhead United 3-2 at Gower Park today in their ASB Chatham Cup quarterfinal to send the underdogs into the last four of the prestigious knockout competition.
Two goals from talented youngster Scott Hilliar and a penalty from veteran defender Aaron Scott saw the hosts defeat the Northern League Premier Division leaders, who got both their goals from Bill Tuiloma.
Melville, beaten Cup finalists in 2003, now have to wait for Monday's semifinal draw, with the other three quarterfinals to be played tomorrow.
The Division One promotion chasers went ahead after 11 minutes when the influential Jama Boss played in midfield partner Hilliar to sidefoot past visiting keeper Shane Norton.
However, a crashing volley from Tuiloma drew Birkenhead level just 90 seconds later.
Hilliar put Melville back in front after 19 minutes when his left-wing inswinging corner eluded everyone to find the back of the net at the far post.
Scott gave Melville a two-goal lead 12 minutes into the second spell with a second bite at the cherry from the penalty spot after Boss was brought down. Norton sprung left to save the first effort, but linesman Chris Wolken ruled Norton had left his line before the kickwas taken, and Scott went the other way from the re-take to score.
Tuiloma converted a pull-back from Daniel Morgan to reduce the deficit with 22 minutes to play, and while Sam Margetts hit the underside of the crossbar with 17 minutes remaining, Melville held firm while the visitors ended with 10 men after Jack Hobson-McVeigh was sent off in the 84th minute when picking up his second yellow card.