Buln Buln pulled off the upset of the round, with the young Lyrebirds team comfortably accounting for a Poowong team that impressed in the opening round.
Having matched reigning premier Nyora for the most part last week, the Lyrebirds proved it was no fluke as they won each of the first three quarters of the match on the way to winning, 16-8 (104) to 11-7 (73).
With Hayden Baker asserting his authority on the contest (he finished with a remarkable eight goals), the Magpies struggled to find any ascendency until the final quarter.
The Lyrebirds led by a goal at quarter time, and extended the lead to a handy buffer at the main break with four goals to one in the second term.
The Magpies found more avenues to goal in the third term to boot three majors, but it was the Lyrebirds with all the answers as they booted six of their own to have the match in their keeping at the final change.
The proud Poowong team found something in the final term, booting five goals to three in a display of form they would have liked to have seen throughout the contest.
Trent Baker, Matthew Gray, Jake Herbel, Marko Kulas and Charlie Park were among the better players alongside Hayden Baker’s eight goal heroics in a positive sign that Buln Buln’s yoing talent has turned a corner.
Jack Hazendonk, Trevor Hooker (three goals), Joseph Bisognin, Thomas Wyatt, James Doria and Josh Harvey helped the Magpies find something in the final term.Davyd Reid - Warragul & Drouin Gazette
Catani registered its first win of the season with a crushing victory at home over Yarragon.
The Blues were dominant from start to finish, scoring five goals to zero in the first term and 10 goals to three in the fourth to win by 100 points, 24.12 (156) to 7.14 (56).
Nick Visser (seven goals) ran riot up forward, while Daniel Barrand (five goals) and Paul Pattison (four goals) were also potent in attack.
Hayley Wildes - Pakenham Gazette
Lang Lang led by four points at the final break against Neerim Neerim South at home, but was unable to hang on.
It was a battle of the dominant forwards as Tyssen Morrow (seven goals) and Ben Mitchell (seven goals) traded majors all afternoon, but eventually Morrow led his team to victory, 13.13 (91) to 13.4 (82).
Hayley Wildes - Pakenham Gazette
An inspirational left foot checkside from the pocket from Longwarry’s Riley Rundell helped give the Crows the lift they needed to overcome reigning premier Nyora by just two-points, 10-7 (67) to 9-11 (65).
While the Crows hit the front late in the third term with a long goal, Nyora kicked the first two goals of the final term to re-establish the narrow buffer it had enjoyed for much of the contest.
A diving mark on the lead and conversion from Ben Schultz was followed by the Saints finding a player in space to run into an open goal as the visitor pushed the margin out to 14-points.
While the Saints were starting to get back on top, they missed the next three opportunities to ice the match, including a poster.
Enter Rundell, whose goal of the year contender at the 15 minute mark gave the Crows a real lift.
From the resultant centre bounce the Crows won a free kick for a hold and went forward to find Tye Holland in space to immediately close the margin to five points.
While the Saints steadied with a long goal, the Crows came again as Russell Lehman immediately played on after marking on the lead for the immediate response.
Riding the wave of a passionate home crowd, the Crows were getting on top and hit the front after a strong mark at the top of the goal square.
Earlier, it was Nyora who made the running with the first four goals of the match.
A long kick from Brad Arnold at half forward rolled through for the Saint’s first, before Tim Burns swooped on the loose ball soon after for their second.
A smother and toe poke from Arnold set up Burns to soccer the Saints’ third.
A conversion from the pocket by the Saints quickly had the Crows on the back foot before Russell Lehman stopped the rot, but facing a three goal deficit at the first change the Crows still had their work cut out.
Nyora were first to score in the second term before the Crows hit back with a long goal to Russell Lehman late in the term.
Mathew Miller marked on the lead and converted for the Saints to undo the Crows’ hard work, with a four goal lead at the long break.
Longwarry were able to respond in the third term, booting four goals while keeping the Saints goalless to hit the front.
A good handball release to set up Braydon McHugh was the play of the day and put the Crows back on track.
Nyora regained the lead with the first two goals of the final term before Rundell’s magic sparked one final response from the Crows as they hit the front late in the term.
It had been Russell Lehman, Nicholas Redley, Cory Lenders, Jack Muirhead, Cole Cook and Danny Wells who stepped up to will the Crows to the lead.
For Nyora Arnold, Dylan Heylen, Ilan Osman, Rhys Bancroft, Jesse Heylen and Alan Miller leading the effort as the Saints tried desperately to hold on.
With time running out for the Saints, the Crows controlled possession as Lenders found Nathan Fry in the forward 50, the home side celebrating as the siren sounded despite the missed shot.
Ellinbank continued its strong form, comfortably accounting for Nilma-Darnum 19-15 (129) to 7-7 (49).
The Bombers hung in for the first term, before the Eagles kicked away to a big lead with six goals to one in the second term followed by seven goals to nil in the third.
Facing an 88-point deficit at the final change, the Bombers showed some fight to win in the final quarter with four goals to three.
Adam Cook booted six goals in a best afield effort, with Hayden Stagg, Shaun Phelan (three goals), Jordyn Flannery (four goals), Francis D’Agistino and coach Ben Wragg also among the better players.
Ben Campbell kicked four goals for the Bombers, with Logan Deschepper, Dylan Cann, Jack Ruddell and Sean Viotto also among the better players.Davyd Reid - Warragul & Drouin Gazette
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Buln Buln v Poowong, Longwarry v Nyora and Nilma Darnum v Ellinbank match reviews written by Davyd Reid reporting for Warragul and Drouin Gazette. To view original articles in full online subscribe to WDG here.
Catani v Yarragon and Lang Lang v Neerim-Neerim South match reviews written by Hayley Wildes reporting for Pakenham Gazette. To view original article in full online subscribe the Pakenham Gazette here.