SEBASTOPOL is one step closer to the Ballarat and District Soccer Association open division title.
The Vikings staked a grand final spot with a 3-2 win against Warrnambool in a qualifying final at Morshead Park on Sunday night.
A tight clash forced the Vikings to go into extra time to claim the win.
They pushed forward, Dom Swinton was kicked over in the box and earned his team the penalty that Ryan Rykers converted midway through the second half of overtime.
Vikings coach Paul McClounan said it was exciting and a relief to get through to the title match in a fortnight’s time.
“It’s a good feeling – this is what we’ve wanted,” McClounan said.
“It would’ve been harder to travel to Warrnambool and have to play again next week after two hours of tough soccer.
“Our reserves also won and are straight through to the grand final as well so we’ll take a bit more of a serious approach at the club later this week and focus on extra recovery early in our preparations.”
Warrnambool must meet an in-form Ballarat in a preliminary final this week.
Ballarat powered past North United 5-2 in an elimination final on Saturday night.
McClounan said Warrnambool had strengthened its line-up late in the season and would be hard to beat, but Ballarat had been looking good.
The Vikings dominated possession against Warrnambool but both teams struggled to find an edge.
Warrnambool scored half-way through the opening period and Viking Rykers mustered a reply minutes before half-time.
McClounan said his players were their own worst enemy, bickering in the first half, but regrouped and looked strong in the second.
The Vikings scored midway through the second half, only for Warrnambool to stage a late response and send the game into extra time.