Grand Final atonement for Western Sydney Wanderers
The Wanderers claimed the premiers' plate and went all the way to the playoff decider in their debut campaign last year, before stumbling at the final hurdle by losing 2-0 to Central Coast.
Flying winger Hersi and holding player La Rocca both sat out that game due to suspension, and were sorely missed as their team-mates fell just short of a fairytale finish.
They will be almost certain starters this time around after their goals earned Tony Popovic's team a 2-0 semi-final win over Mariners on Saturday night, setting up a decisive clash against either Brisbane Roar or Melbourne Victory next Sunday.
"It's very special this one," Hersi told Fox Sports.
"It's the second year. I was not there last year. After the game I was disappointed because I couldn't help my team-mates. I hope this time I'll be there to score a goal and (lift) the trophy."
Hersi believes the fact the Wanderers have been competitive in both the A-League and the AFC Champions League during just their second season in existence is a testament to hard work being done behind the scenes in Parramatta.
"For the whole season it's been difficult for us because we have (had the) ACL," he said.
"Everybody expected us (to struggle). We finished second and we're still in the ACL, so it's a big compliment to the (playing) group, to Western Sydney as a club. Now we go to the grand final and hopefully we win."
La Rocca meanwhile claimed the hard-fought victory over the Mariners was yet another example of Tony Popovic's side producing when it matters most.
"It was a big game. Always we are ready for the big games," he said.
"Today we showed that again. Now we have to play one more big game. Hopefully it won't be like last year.
"Last season we did very well during all the competition and later I missed the (grand final). Hopefully this year I will play."
The Italian midfielder sympathised with Saturday's beaten opponents, who only arrived back in Australia a day before the game after a mid-week ACL defeat to Sanfrecce Hiroshima.
"We know that Central Coast has a good team," he said.
"Yes, they had a difficult schedule and they played well, but today we just had to win."