Bendigo Football League…
KANGAROO FLAT snapped the trend of close games between the Roos and Kyneton by disposing of the Tigers with an 11-goal second half on Saturday.
No under-pressure major in the concluding 90 seconds to secure a narrow win at Bendigo Mazda Oval like last year.
This time the Roos flicked the switch at the start of the third term booting 11 goals to four after Kyneton had led by two straight kicks at the long break.
With an even spread of almost a dozen goalkickers and without big name recruit Russell Robertson who sat out the second half with a quad injury the Roos bounced home to consolidate their top five position: 17.19 (121) to Kyneton’s 13.9 (87).
The Tigers were in sparkling form early. Spearhead Mitchell Scholard booted three of his four goals in the opening term: from two classic snaps and following a big pack mark.
The Roos managed only six goals from 16 scoring shots in the first half.
Kyneton defenders Harrison Huntley, Leigh Warne and Jarrod Andreatta stifled key Roo forwards Cameron Rinaldi and Rhys Healey.
Hard-running midfielders Jarrod Witnish, Max O’Sullivan and Michael Rainey with O’Sullivan also handy all match up forward assisted the Tiger backmen.
Then the Roos exploded away as the second half began. Majors to Rinaldi and Healey handed the home side a two- point lead nine minutes into the third term.
Ross Turner, who restricted dynamic small forward Ben Weightman to just two goals for the match, and Jack Bowyer shut down the Tiger attack. Ruckman Nick Lang took mark-after-mark across half-back, as well.
The Flat went on to add 6.5 in the vital third term.
Another five goals to Kyneton’s four in the last term cemented the Flat’s four premiership points.
Flat’s busy midfielders Mitchell Hough, Simon Davies and Tom Pridgeon took their individual goal tallies to two apiece while at the Station Street end Huntley, who’d been moved to centre half-forward, booted a pair for Kyneton – the first following a huge speccy as he climbed over a pack.
Roo coach Jason Stevens said Robertson had played just 20 minutes of game time, at best, with his quad injury forcing him to the bench.
“When you look at our performances we’ve been good in the third quarters for most of the year to date. Since Round 1, to be exact.
“We weren’t too happy about the way we’d played that first half so the boys responded pretty well.
“And we had another good spread of goal kickers (11 in all), so that makes it pretty difficult to man up on,” the coach said.
Kyneton coach Luke Beattie said it was clear that Kangaroo Flat players had continued all day to hunt the ball and probably had “a bit stronger fitness base than us.”
“That edge in fitness seemed to help them. It certainly brought about more opportunities for them in the second half as their midfielders ran well through the corridor,” he said.
Beattie added the Roos were able to take their opportunities in the last quarter, too, and were able “to blow out the margin by a couple more goals than they really should have.”
Kangaroo Flat 2.4 6.10 12.15 17.19 (121)
Kyneton 4.3 9.4 9.5 13.9 (87)
Goals – Kang. Flat: Cameron Rinaldi 3, Tom Pridgeon 2, Mitchell Hough 2, Simon Davies 2, Rhys Healey 2, Tim Brooks, Daniel Dempster, Marty Kelly, Russell Robertson, Trent McInnes, Ash Benbow. Kyneton: Mitchell Scholard 4, Ben Weightman 2, Max O’Sullivan 2, Harrison Huntley 2, Ethan Foreman, Patrick McCarthy, Hugh Schiavello.
Best – Kang. Flat: Ross Turner, Jack Bowyer, Tom Pridgeon, Mitchell Hough, Simon Davies, Ash Benbow, Nick Lang. Kyneton: Jarrod Witnish, Max O’Sullivan, Michael Rainey, Leigh Warne, Jarrod Andreatta, Hamish Govan, Harrison Huntley.
AROUND the grounds and Strathfieldsaye didn’t allow Maryborough to kick a goal until the last term.
The Princes Park Pies went goalless for three quarters on the wide expanses of Flight Centre Park as co-coach Bryce Curnow and skipper Shannon Geary landed five goals apiece for the Storm.
Matt Gretgrix celebrated his 150th game for Eaglehawk by slotting a lazy 10 goals. The Hawks led Gisborne by only three kicks at half-time but went on to add 15 goals to three after the main break.
Apart from the ‘G-Train’ Gretgrix, Cam McGlashan and Ben McPhee were outstanding for the Hawks while Jake Conolan and Pat Trotta were among the best for the young Gisborne outfit.
Sandhurst upped its already impressive percentage with a huge win over finals aspirants Castlemaine.
Seb Greene had a day out for the Dragons, booting five goals, while the half-back line led by Lachy Ross and Codie Price were on top all afternoon.
Jackson Hood and Kalan Huntly were among the Maine’s best.
At MyJet Oval unbeaten Golden Square left old rivals South Bendigo still winless after five rounds.
The Bulldogs had a mortgage on the four premiership points following a six-goals-to-nil opening quarter.
Co-captain Jack Geary was in great touch for the Dogs with Hamish Morcom and Chris Ryan also in the Square’s best.
Isaiah Miller was pick of the bunch for the Bloods.
Final scores around the BFNL grounds: Golden Square 17.10 (112) def. Sth. Bendigo 7.8 (50); Strathfieldsaye 20.22 (142) def. Maryborough 3.5 (23); Sandhurst 19.17 (131) def. Castlemaine 9.8 (62) and Eaglehawk 21.14 (140) def. Gisborne 7.5 (47).
Top Five: G. Square (still unbeaten), Sandhurst, Strathfieldsaye, Kangaroo Flat, Kyneton.
Next round: Bendigo vs. Gippsland at Western Park, Warragul (inter-league weekend).
Heathcote DFL and North Central F.L. are also both playing away from home leaving the QEO, one of regional Victoria’s showpiece grounds, completely empty and without any regional footy for the weekend.
Heathcote is matched up against Bellarine at Ocean Grove while North Central travels to take on Central Murray.
Loddon Valley has withdrawn from the 2016 inter-league championships and won’t field a team this year.
BFNL Round six, 28 May Eaglehawk vs. G. Square, Maryborough vs. Sth. Bendigo, Kyneton vs. Sandhurst, S’saye vs. Gisborne and C’maine vs. Kangaroo Flat.