SALE United’s hopes of advancing straight to the Gippsland Soccer League semi-finals were ended after its 6-3 loss at home to Moe United.
It was not the best of starts for the Swans, who conceded the opening goal 20 seconds into the match.
Dean Nichols levelled the scores before Robbie Stephen kicked a goal from the penalty spot after captain Ash Ross was taken down in the box.
With the home side leading 2-1 at half-time, the Red Devils scored the next two goals before the Swans responded with another goal.
The Red Devils then scored three more goals to take the match away from the Swans.
Matt Shearing scored a hat-trick for Moe. The result pushes the Swans from second on the table to fourth, meaning it will be playing the qualifying finals during the first weekend of finals in a fortnight.
The result of one of the two catch-up games will be played this weekend which could take away a home final from the Swans.
Champion Churchill United will host fifth-placed Fortuna on Saturday night. A Fortuna victory would push it past Sale and possibly Falcons.
Moe will host Falcons on Sunday. The winner will claim second place and an automatic place in the semi-finals alongside Churchill.
This year the Gippsland Soccer League has introduced a top six finals series with the teams ranked third to sixth playing in the first weekend for the right to meet the top two sides in the semi-finals. The two semi-final winners will meet in the grand final for the premiership.
In other matches last weekend, Churchill defeated Traralgon City 1-0, the same score as Morwell Pegasus’ victory over Monash, Falcons had a 3-0 win over Fortuna, and Newborough-Yallourn defeated Traralgon Olympians 2-0.
SALE United claimed the youth championship after defeating Moe 2-0. The Swans finished two points ahead of Monash.
Despite a 9-5 win, Sale missed the reserves championship. The Swans are a point behind Monash, which will play Traralgon Olympians this Sunday in a catch-up game.
Both Sale sides will enjoy the first weekend of the finals off.
Tyers won the women’s championship, eight points ahead of Fortuna.
TWO Sale United teams will be taking part in junior finals on Saturday.
The Sale Green under 12s team will play Moe United at Olympic Park, Moe from 11.45am, while the Sale Green under 14s will play Traralgon Olympians from 1pm at Harold Preston Reserve, Traralgon.