Mackensy and Montanna Mathews capture WNPL double with Calder United

WINNING DOUBLE: Montanna and Mackensy Mathews show off their medals after claiming victory in the Victorian Women's National Premier League under-19s grand final with Calder United. Picture: MARK JESSER
WINNING DOUBLE: Montanna and Mackensy Mathews show off their medals after claiming victory in the Victorian Women's National Premier League under-19s grand final with Calder United. Picture: MARK JESSER

Albury sisters Mackensy and Montanna Mathews' first season together in the Victorian Women's National Premier League couldn't have gone any better.

The AWFA exports captured the league title and grand final with Calder United in impressive fashion - dropping just one game the entire year in the under-19s.

Calder finished 11 points clear atop the league table, but were forced into a penalty shootout in the decider against Alamein to capture the double.

Scores were locked at 1-1 after regulation and extra time, before the Calder girls won the shootout 3-1.

"It was such a good feeling winning the grand final," Mackensy said.

"It was very intense and very physical.

"You had to be on your feet every second of the game, if you were behind you were out of the game.

"I was the fifth penalty taker and I thought 'this is happening all over again', so I was nervous.

"My teammate in front of me Claudia (Ottone) finished it off for us, which was a good feeling."

It was Mackensy's second campaign at the club and her first WNPL grand final victory after falling to South Melbourne at the final hurdle last year.

The 18-year-old's goal is to cement herself in Calder's senior side next season, before staking her claims for a W-League contract and potential higher honours.

"My coach Ian (Williamson) is pushing me to go towards seniors next year. I've loved being under Ian so much this year, he's helped me develop even more as a player," she said.

"We were travelling four times a week to Melbourne while I was studying for HSC. It was really hard, but I got there in the end."

Montanna, 16, was delighted with the way her debut season at premier league level panned out.

"It feels amazing to be a part of such a great team and being in the Calder community," Montanna said.

"I have a few ambitions when I finish, but I hope to play again next year and aim for higher goals like playing seniors and making my way through to W-League and the Australian team."

Montanna admitted the side started to celebrate early, before conceding in the final five minutes to finish locked at 1-1 and require penalties to get over the line.

"The penalty shootout was crazy. We were all there to comfort each other and support each other," she said.

"We did come back in the end to finish it off."

Montanna would like to see Border NPL outfit Murray United form a women's team of its own to cut their travel commitments.

"Instead of travelling three hours (each way) four nights a week," she added.

"I really love the intensity (in the WNPL) and how it's improved me as player to develop and have more awareness.

"Obviously I started from AWFA reps and that's my grassroots and transitioning from AWFA to NPL is just a massive difference.

"The intensity of playing against girls my age and even seniors that have dropped back against us has really improved us all as players."

This story Mackensy and Montanna Mathews capture WNPL double with Calder United first appeared on The Border Mail.