The hosts produced a brave performance to keep the NSW Premier League leaders at bay until second-half goals to Robbie Younis and Tynan Diaz saw Bonnyrigg secure all three points on the night.
This morning?s fire disgracefully lit at Eastern Creek saw the ground coated in a continual thin layer of smoke, and while conditions must have been tough on the lungs, the players still produced an intense 90? minutes of football.
Bonnyrigg looked to assert their dominance from the outset, pushing forward in search of an early opener while Spartans appeared unfazed by the stern task ahead, staving off wave after wave of Bonnyrigg attacks.
The early pressure was temporarily alleviated by an injury scare to Spartans goalkeeper Carlos Saliadarre, however the captain was soon back on his feet after a brief treatment from the Spartans physio team.
The visitors finally managed to breach the Spartans backline just before the quarter hour mark, however Saliadarre was alert to dart off his line and block Younis? finish.
The home side sought to carve out chances on the counterattack, swiftly pushing forward on the flanks while Greg Kondek and Luke Boyd looked to boss the centre of the park; both receiving bookings within the first half hour for overzealous challenges.
While the action was end to end, chances were few and far between as Ken Chun fired over and Nikola Stanojevic?s effort was saved while the Spartans best effort on goal came from Kondek who saw his 30-yard free kick well held by Andrew Bazi in the Bonnyrigg goal.
Kondek blazed a late chance over from the edge of the box after yet another sharp counterattack just before the sides went into the sheds all square at the interval.
The half-time score appeared to spur the hosts on as they came within inches of breaking the deadlock shortly after the restart.
Kondek, Andre Carle, and Boyd combined well on the break, and the latter?s cross narrowly missed the outstretched leg of Kondek at the far post with only Bazi to beat.
Bonnyrigg responded in kind as Harris Gaitatzis found Ben Spruce unmarked in the box; however the defender?s finish was wayward as he skewed his first time effort wide of the far post with the goal at his mercy.
Despite a sterling opening hour between the sticks it was an unfortunate aerial misjudgement from Saliadarre that led to the opening goal.
In an attempt to claim Chris Tadrosse?s free kick the Spartans goalkeeper failed to find his way through a crowd of players and was caught out of position as the ball found its way back into the box.
Younis made no mistake, breaking the deadlock with a natural poacher?s finish as he clipped the ball over Saliadarre and brought the travelling fans to their feet.
The NSW Premier League top scorer attempted to double his tally from the set piece minutes later, yet Saliadarre was not to be beaten on this occasion as he produced a confident low save.
The visitors came close to doubling their advantage soon after as Diaz found Gaitatzis in the box with an inch perfect cross, however Tomislav Herceg was on hand to pressure Gaitatzis into scuffing his finish and keep his side in the match.
Spartans looked to force their way back into the match as Chris Bedzo, Kondek, Carle, and substitute Steven Veleski looked to get in behind the Bonnyrigg backline, yet it was Bonnyrigg who accomplished the feat with a long ball that caught the host?s backline off guard.
Diaz timed his run to perfection, beating the offside trap to control the ball, skip past the onrushing Saliadarre, and tuck the ball into the open goal to wrap up the three points for Bonnyrigg.
Spartans came agonisingly to pulling a goal back soon after as Kondek struck the post with a deflected free-kick from the edge of the Bonnyrigg box while Gaitatzis saw his powerful low drive well held by Saliadarre.
After five weeks on the sidelines defender Alex Mansueto made his long awaited return from injury in the dying minutes, coming off the bench just before substitute Jacob Ott produced the final effort of the match ? a rasping 30-yard drive that was spectacularly tipped over by Bazi who held onto his clean sheet.
While disappointed with the final result, Blacktown Spartans coach Ben DeHaan found many positives in his side?s fearless performance against their highly fancied opposition tonight:
?I?m extremely proud,? said DeHaan.
?That was probably the best intensity we?ve shown all year.
?It was a hard night as at times we couldn?t even get a tackle or a bump in but I think our did a fantastic job on Younis and the rest.
?Effort-wise the boys were fantastic.
?They were soft goals ? a couple of errors ? but at the end of the day we had our chances at the other end which was a positive thing.
?It was just one of those games; everyone got their heads down and went for it ? it was a good match.?
DeHaan also took time out to make special mention of Greg Kondek, who ran his socks off throughout the match and was at the heart of nearly every attacking opportunity for the hosts:
?Kondy has been excellent,? said DeHaan.
?When we look at guys that have stepped up this season he?s probably been the standout for us.
?He?s really taken well to the league.?
Bonnyrigg White Eagles coach Brian Brown was pleased to come away with a win against a team that his squad were more than wary of going into the match:
?I?m very happy with the result,? said Brown.
?I think this is one of those games that had danger written all over it.
?Blacktown Spartans have been playing really good and while the pitch surface is really good the ball sticks a little more than other synthetic turfs so it was very stop-start with a lot of free-kicks.
?In the last two or three games, especially against Rockdale, it?s been very stop-start with a lot of corners and free-kicks from which nothing really came out of it so we just had to keep going.
?Credit to them, it was due to them stopping us, and at the end I?m happy with the three points.?
Brown also made special mention of a few key players who have stood out in recent weeks, stating his surprise that A-League clubs have not been tracking a number of players within his squad:
?In the last 6 games Tynan (Diaz) has been outstanding,? said Brown.
?He?s been one of our better players ? and we?ve got some top performers.
?Nikola Zonjic at the back and Ben Spruce have stepped up in the last weeks since we lost (David) Vrankovic and Mansueto through injury.
?We?ve got some very good players and I?ve been surprised that the A-League clubs haven?t been taking a look at them.
?Some of these boys deserve at least a chance.?
Blacktown Spartans 0
Bonnyrigg White Eagles 2 (Robbie Younis 63?, Tynan Diaz 79?)
Saturday August 4th, 2012
Blacktown Football Park, Rooty Hill
Referee: Adam Susz
Assistant Referees: Grant South and Michelle Allen
Fourth Official: Samuel Grasso
Blacktown Spartans: 1.Carlos Saliadarre; 2.Michael Khoury, 3.Nathan Millgate, 5.Luke Boyd (15.Louis Bozanic 82?), 6.Greg Kondek, 9.Christopher Bedzo, 10.Christopher Gomez (11.Steven Veleski 70?), 14.Jonathan Castano-Acero, 17.Peter Hubbard, 22.Andre Carle (27.Jacob Ott 80?), 36.Tomislav Herceg
Substitutes Not Used: 20.Sean Mitchell, 40.Daniel Sadaka
Yellow Cards: Greg Kondek 25?, Luke Boyd 29?
Red Cards: Nil
Bonnyrigg White Eagles: 20.Andrew Bazi, 13.Nikola Stanojevic (2.Alex Mansueto 90?), 6.Nikola Zonjic, 11.Ben Spruce, 5.Chris Tadrosse, 7.Tynan Diaz (15.Chris Payne 82?), 21.Ken Chun (10.Jordan Simpson 87?), 19.Harris Gaitatzis, 23.Mitchell Long, 9.Robbie Younis, 18.Adrian Ucchino
Substitutes Not Used: 17.Jordan Crighton, 33.Nikodin Matic
Yellow Cards: Tynan Diaz 41?
Red Cards: Nil
-By Michael Shoolman