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Stony held on against a fast finish Tarwin at Shark Park on Saturday. The wind was always a factor, with a stiff breeze favouring the gate end. Both teams used it to great effect, but when Stony Creek pushed their lead out to 26 point at three quarter time with a commanding 15 minutes of football, Tarwin’s chances seemed slim.

In the last quarter, however, Tarwin managed to draw level with a surge of goals, with the Sharks’ highly influential big man Anthony Carroll getting the comeback rolling with a 60 metre bomb. Stony, though, had a little more mettle – kicking one against the breeze to steady the ship.

A big factor in Stony’s victory was a well drilled backline, with key position players Andrew “Boobs” Logan and Aiden Paton denying the Sharks forward entry. Young back pocket Kurt Newton also performed well. Back from Narre Warren, former Allies captain Justin Marriott held sway for the Lions, along with the hard-as -concrete Darcy Atkins. For Tarwin, Matt “Bobby” Williams has stamped his authority on the competition, proving himself a prized recruit. On Saturday, he kicked a wonderful goal on the run – but his great contribution came from his endless tackle count. It was also Will “Chicken” Edmonds’ best game for the year and he continues to improve week by week. Nick Battersby was also fantastic across the half back line, taking intercept marks and directing traffic. Meanwhile, Matt “Zaggers” Zagni kept Stony goal kicking machine Karl Bergles from scoring a single major.

After the game, Sharks coach Mark Garnham, drew on the positives of the loss, telling his players that there are brighter times ahead if they stick together.

The Great Southern Star

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FISH Creek were at home for a second week in a row for the grand final replay against Foster on Saturday.

After the tense struggle all day, it was the Kangaroos again that prevailed inflicting the first loss of the year to the Tigers.

With both sides missing some key players, the game got underway with Foster kicking to the Creek end with a slight wind advantage.

The Tigers went straight into attack and within the opening minute they were on the scoreboard with a goal to their key forward McGowan. The Kangas didn’t let the initial stages phase them however, and for much of the quarter it was a defensive struggle with the desperation shown from both sides a highlight.

The Tigers goaled again at the 18-minute mark via youngster Angwin and then again two minutes later when McGowan was gifted his second from a costly Kangaroos turnover that had the Tigers on top extending the margin out to 18 points at the opening break.

The second quarter was much of the same with the pressure being applied by both sides very good. It was Fish Creek that got on the scoreboard first with a goal to the dangerous Shaw to open the Kangaroos account very early in the quarter.

Foster answered through Pace shortly after and again there was a long period where neither team could get on the scoreboard.

The Kangaroos were starting to get the ascendancy later into the quarter as their continued pressure and fantastic teamwork was starting to take its toll on the previously undefeated Tiger outfit. Late goals to McGannon and Cooper for Fish Creek before Foster’s gun midfielder Clark out marked his opponent to slot the Tigers’ fifth and final goal of the match.

The Kangas needed one going into half time and it was youngster Jai Stefani that stood tall with a great contested mark and goal from 45m out that had the Kangaroos going into the half with their tails up and only nine points in the game.

The third quarter was a battle with Fish Creek locking down on the Foster side with continued pressure in a dour struggle.

Both sides with opportunities but neither side able to capitalize it wasn’t until the 20-minute mark of the quarter that the Kangaroos were able to break the shackles when co-captain Bailey Harfield Park’s intercept mark and running goal from 40m out brought the Kangaroos to within a goal at the final change.

Two very different huddles with the Foster coach Rooney very loud in his address towards his side and absolute contrast in the Fish Creek huddle with the Kangaroos Coach Hoskin very calculated in his address asking his boys to continue their pressure and to stick to the game plan in the final quarter. That is absolutely what the Fish Creek side did, rebounding the initial attack by Foster bullying the ball from defence into attack where Cooper won a free kick 50m out that he converted to give his side the lead for the first time in the match only minutes into the final quarter.

From there, the Roos never looked back and goals to the crafty old fox Manne out of the ruck, followed by a nice crumbing goal to Cooper and a strong mark and goal from Shaw was enough to put the Tigers away for a 25-point win to the Fish Creek boys.

South Gippsland Sentinel Times

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Before you could say Jumping Cat Grant, the home side had wrecked the match with a six goal to nil opening quarter, going into the sheds at half time with an 11 goal to two lead.

The Demons simply had no answer for the superior play-reading skills of Toora’s Jack Weston who was involved in many of the team’s scoring moves, and they really did look like one of the teams you can pencil in to play off for the big prize this year.

Stung into action, MDU really turned their game around after half time, showing what they are capable of, admittedly with the sting out of the contest.

They put on six goals to Toora’s two adding respectability to the scoreboard but leaving supporters wondering how often these lapses of concentration are going to emerge. MDU was well served by Tim Harris whether in defence or forward, Jake McMillan was one of those responsible for getting the team moving with good contested work after half time, Sam Wilson continued with his good form in defence as too did Luke Marotta, part of a good defensive unit that was let down further up the field by poor pressure early both by forwards and those on the ball. Steve Hawkins was again a good target up forward when MDU moved the ball quickly and they can afford to look up with confidence when he’s in their sights.

South Gippsland Sentinel Times

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Tarwin v Stony Creek match review published by The Great Southern Star. To view original article in full online subscribe to TGSS here.

Fish Creek v Foster and Toora v MDU match reviews published by South Gippsland Sentinel Times. To view original article in full online subscribe to SGST here.

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