Bendigo Football League…
SANDHURST consolidated second place on the BFNL senior ladder with an emphatic 50-point win over Gisborne on Saturday.
An excellent crowd was on hand at the Gardiner Reserve to support the young Bulldogs and welcome back veteran star midfielder, Ollie Messaoudi.
When the Dragons burst away with a seven-goal-to-two first quarter it was going to be a huge task for the Dogs to get back on even terms.
Galen Munari, lurking in a forward pocket, was a nightmare for the Gisborne defence. He finished with four goals as the Hurst roared home 17.17 (119) to 10.9 (69).
With on-ballers Kristen Height, Lee Coghlan and Joel Wharton pushing the ball goalwards the Dragons bombarded the pavilion end goals early on.
Their first six goals all came from set shots: marks or free kicks.
Matt Thornton, Height and Matt Gray were on target as quarter-time loomed. The Dogs’ only replies came from Tom Wood and Tom Cassidy, both of whom worked hard match-long.
Then after a brisk second quarter major from Munari at the 45-second mark – following a bullet-like handball from Nick Stagg – the Dragons went quiet.
Gisborne attacked consistently for 10 minutes. Yet only Callan Haynes was able to slot a major during this period.
The Dragons came out fired-up after the long break. When Seb Greene found Lee Coghlan mid-term the midfielder’s major handed Sandhurst a lead of more than 40 points.
Gisborne’s Cassidy, Wood and follower-forward Matt Wilson (who finished with three goals) were all on target at the creek end although the Dogs were still down by six goals at the last break.
Away went the Dragons again in the final term.
A blistering burst of 5.5 resulted with Koe Ngawati (2) and defender Luke O’Sullivan, who made the overlap coming down from half-back, both adding their names to Hurst’s expanding list of goalkickers.
Gisborne did manage to add 3.3 in the final term with left-footer Jake Conolan slamming home the Dogs’ ninth major. The home side eventually closed the final margin to 50 points.
Coach Wayne Primmer said his Dragons hadn’t capitalised on their forward 50 entries in the second quarter.
“Especially when you compare it with the first. We started the game with 13 inside 50s and we scored 10 times – then to take it in 15 times in the second quarter and only score on five occasions (1.4) I wasn’t very happy with that.
“It was good that we had an even spread of goalkickers but then we had a player who kicked 2.5 (Lee Coghlan) and another few who kicked extra points, too.
“And Lee is generally very good at converting,” Primmer said.
The coach said he wouldn’t place too much emphasis on who was injured and out of the side. “We can only play with who we’ve got and who we put out on the field each week.”
Sandhurst 7.3 8.7 12.12 17.17 (119)
Gisborne 2.4 4.6 7.6 10.9 (69)
Goals – Sandhurst: Galen Munari 4, Lee Coghlan 2, Koe Ngawati 2, Kristan Height 2, Joel Wharton, Matt Thornton, Nick Stagg, Matt Gray, Luke O’Sullivan, Charlie Bowyer, Lachlan Zimmer. Gisborne: Matt Wilson 3, Tom Cassidy 2, Tom Wood 2, Jake Conolan, Eamon McKenna, Callan Haynes.
Best – Sandhurst: Joel Wharton, Lachlan Ross, Kristan Height, Galen Munari, Lee Coghlan, Jake McLean. Gisborne: Matt Wilson, Jarrad Lynch, Nick Doolan, Tom Cassidy, Jake Conolan, Eamon McKenna.
KYNETON sored its biggest victory in 21 years with a 140-point belting of Maryborough at Princes Park.
Mitchell Scholard headed the Tigers’ goal onslaught with nine majors. He was joined up front by Nathan Thompson (6) and the BFNL’s leading small forward Ben Weightman (4). The rampage inside forward 50 for the Tigers also assisted Hugh Schiavello who bagged three majors.
The Magpies bagged just four goals in the first half and four in the second with James Templeton and assistant coach Matt Johnston their best.
Kangaroo Flat just got over the line against a determined South Bendigo at headquarters, the QEO.
An upset was on the cards when the Bloods booted the opening three goals of the final term to snatch the lead.
The Roos had to battle back and it wasn’t until deep into the final stanza that they cemented their four, premiership points.
Midfielders Marty Kelly and Corey Greer banged home five goals between them while key forward Cameron Rinaldi was also good.
And a six goal-to-one third quarter helped Strathfieldsaye get back on track as the Storm downed Eaglehawk by 35 points at Fllght Centre Park.
The Storm led by just 10 points at the main break but utility Jake Hall finished the game with five goals and was the difference between the two teams.
Hall will be one of the BFNL’s main weapons in the inter-league clash against Gippsland later this month.
Golden Square sunk Castlemaine with a second half surge with key forwards Ryan Herring and Travis Baird nailing five goals apiece.
Herring would have been a great spearhead for the Blue and Golds in their trip to Gippsland but he’s already withdrawn from BFNL coach Brett Fitzpatrick’s training squad.
The Maine Magpies trailed by just nine points at half-time but had no counter to the Wade Street Dogs who piled on eight goals to one in the premiership third quarter.
Around the grounds, final scores: Kyneton 28.23 (191) def. Maryborough 8.3 (51); Golden Square 21.17 (143) def. Castlemaine 12.9 (81); Strathfieldsaye 13.13 (91) def. Eaglehawk 8.8 (56) and Kangaroo Flat 12.15 (87) def. South Bendigo 10.12 (72).
Top Five: Golden Square 4 wins, 0 losses, 16 prem. pts; Sandhurst 3-1, 12, 223.11 %; Kyneton 3-1, 12, 159.74 %; Strathfieldsaye 3-1, 12, 152.34 %; Kang. Flat 3-1, 12, 143.06 %.
Round 5, all Saturday: Kang. Flat vs. Kyneton, Eaglehawk vs. Gisborne, Strathfieldsaye vs. Maryborough, Golden Square vs. South Bendigo and Sandhurst vs. Castlemaine.