South West Phoenix Firebirds moved within one win of the title with an emphatic 5-2 win over third-placed Subiaco on Sunday.
Subiaco scored in the opening and closing minutes but Firebirds dominated everything in between, scoring five unanswered goals.
The result means the Firebirds can seal the title this weekend if they beat bottom-placed Gosnells in Perth.
Firebirds welcomed back Asha McClurg from state duties for the clash and went in full-strength, aside from the long-term injured Courtney Butlion.
However, it was Subiaco who struck first – in the opening ten minutes – with a counter-attack that flowed from their own half.
It could have rattled the Firebirds, but instead they hit back and drew level when Lucy Scott collected Nicole Suttie’s pass and used her pace to break free and calmly slot away the equaliser.
Scott was having a big influence and, as Firebirds started to increase their influence on proceedings, struck in similar fashion.
On this occasion, she collected Eleanor Coventry’s through ball and raced away to again slot past the keeper and give the Firebirds a 2-1 lead.
When Scott wasn’t scoring, she was setting them up and she provided a cross soon after which Coventry was the first to – taking full advantage to give the Firebirds a 3-1 lead at half time.
Firebirds were well in control, but a two-goal lead is not always as secure as it looks.
As such, Firebirds were keen to add goals in the second half and did so when Lucy Scott rounded out her hat trick, this time with a fine right foot strike from outside the box.
When Coventry scored soon after to make it 5-1, the game was done and dusted.
Subiaco scored a late consolation goal, but the result had long been in Firebirds’ possession as they close in on the title.
Like last week’s 4-0 win at Northern Redbacks, this was a strong performance against a top-half side and shows the improvement the young Firebirds have made this year.
Even after enduring a recent injury crisis, the Firebirds have picked up where they left off and are finishing the season strongly.
A win this week against bottom side Gosnells should be a mere formality, and will hand the Firebirds the title with one game remaining.
Following a 4-1 loss to Gwelup Croatia, the South West Phoenix Men’s side was determined to get back into the winner’s circle.
UWA Nedlands had other ideas, and put nine unanswered goals past the Phoenix side on Saturday.
They will have a chance to redeem themselves against Rockingham City at WML Stadium this weekend.