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Lang Lang put forth an impressive first half performance against Catani, but the Blues kicked into gear after the main break to run out 25-point winners, 11.10 (76) to 8.3 (51).

Catani could only muster one goal in the first half as Lang Lang’s defence stood tall and the likes of Troy McPherson and Will McGindle were playing superbly. It wasn’t enough though; a 10-goal to four second half saw the

Blues take control of the contest as Jackson Caddy, Liam Adams (three goals) and Nic Visser got heavily involved.

Hayley Wildes - Pakenham Gazette

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While Ellinbank may have started the season with a favourable draw, the Eagles continue to get the job done and it was no different for Saturday’s match against Yarragon as the home side won 16-14 (110) to 7-5 (47).

The Eagles delivered another comfortable victory over a lower ranked opponent to sit comfortably at the top of the table ahead of the greater challenges that will present themselves in the coming weeks.

While the Panthers held the Eagles well in the first term and showed glimpses they could challenge the better teams with the only five goals of the third term, they ultimately couldn’t go with the Eagles for the full four quarters.

Seven goals to one in the second term opened a handy 48-point buffer at half time for the Eagles, and while the Panthers reduced the margin with their dominant third term, they ran out of tickets as the home side finished with another seven goal to one effort in the final term.

Michael Urie led the scoring with four goals, while Mark Johnson and Mitchell Cowan each chipped in with three majors.

Ruckman Francis D’Agostino, Hayden Stagg, Josh Peterson and captain Mark Vassett also led a dominant performance for the home side.

Andrew Budge, Mitchell Jolly, Nicholas Pratt, Ben Virgona, Trent Gleisner and Jake Cropley helped the Panthers step up in the third term.

Warragul & Drouin Gazette

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Nilma-Darnum may have turned a corner from their early season struggles judging by the effort on show against Buln Buln on Saturday.

If they were to be defined by effort, the Bombers could not be faulted as they troubled their opposition who had run with reigning premier Nyora for three quarters and scored an impressive win over Poowong in the early rounds.

Despite losing their ruckman through the week due to the travel wearing him down, the Bombers competed well and had every chance to win despite the Lyrebirds steadying to hold on, 7-12 (54) to 6-7 (43).

Facing a nine-point deficit at the final change, the Bombers made a final charge but were ultimately let down when a yellow card was plucked out for Travis Dyke mid-way through the term, with Dyke one of their better players to that point.

The Bombers had been defending well all match, and it continued to start the final term, as the home team thwarted three attacks from the Lyrebirds.

The wheel turned with the Bombers getting on top and moving forward from a 50 metre penalty, but couldn’t quite pull down the pack mark from the kick forward.

A snap from the pocket sailed out on the full before some inspiration from Patrick Chin cut the margin to five points, dancing around the man on the mark at centre half forward to slot the goal for his fourth of the afternoon.

Buln Buln missed a chance to steady before the home side was dealt a blow with Dyke being sent off, an umpire picking up an offence off the ball to cause some confusion amongst spectators around the ground, who had been watching the play.

Dylan Cann, Jeremy Jarred, Oxley Huson, James Bourke and Nicholas Murray had also led a stellar effort from the Bombers, along with Ben Campbell who competed well in stints in the ruck with his big leap.

Still sensing an opportunity to win the match, the Bombers lifted their intensity and effort.

Dylan Cann and Chin handled to set up Ben Campbell for a goal to hit the front as the home crowd found voice.

The Bombers were finding run and energy, matching it with desperate defence, but the outnumber eventually began to have an effect.

Luke O’Brien scored a checkside goal to put the Lyrebirds back in front, sapping the Bombers’ energy and breaking the home crowd’s hearts.

Sensing a final chance late, the Bombers moved from defence quickly but the Lyrebirds used the extra number to set up a final goal and 13-point victory.

Earlier, it was Buln Buln who converted first through a strong mark but it was the home side who dominated most of the play in the first quarter.

Dyke made a flying shot at the goal and it paid off, while Chin converted after a crude attempt at a spoil.

When a snap was converted in the first minute of the second term, the Bombers kicked clear.

Buln Buln began to pick up possession but couldn’t capitalise on their opportunities, scoring seven behinds for the quarter as the Bombers did a good job of defending and holding their opposition up.

Buln Buln converted from the pocket to close the gap before Brandon Allen snapped truly to put the Lyrebirds in front.

Matt Gray scored a long goal from a free kick from the ruck contest but the Bombers pulled it back through a snap from Chin in a contest that was becoming a real arm wrestle.

A free kick for an arm chop late in the term gave the Lyrebirds a narrow lead at the final change.

Not to be outdone, the Bombers pushed hard in the final term but ultimately couldn’t hold their energy while being a player down.

Gray, Jake Herbel, O’Brien, Trent Baker, Thomas Park and Jack Symes helped the Lyrebirds hold firm as the Bombers well and truly made them earn the four points.

Warragul & Drouin Gazette

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The Cats brought the win home against Nyora at the weekend.

And it was the effort of 21 blokes that held Neerim together as a late attack from Nyora almost took their all-day lead. The final term was a defensive battle that almost saw Nyora work hard with the wind, but Neerim worked just as hard in defence. Although it was Chris Urie who earned the best with four goals, there were many contributors.

The team effort displayed the hard work of the committed playing group that floated Neerim throughout the past two seasons. With juniors being developed and young men coming of age, the Neerim side is going to be tough competition this season. The defence of the Cats was on show in the final term as a switch of play was forced back, to where it was eventually shut down with a holding-the -ball tackle in front of the Neerim goals.

Although the win came with some luck, Nyora kicked five -points in the third term against the breeze. Ryan Spooner and Brad Arnold were two of Nyora’s best once again. The win on Nyora turf is a good sign for the Cats who are building for a strong season this year.

South Gippsland Sentinel Times

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Poowong welcomed Longwarry on Saturday for the ANZAC Day game. The service was carried out by Tom Loughridge and Kevin Stephens, both Vietnam Vets representing the clubs.

Ground conditions were excellent with probably a three goal wind to the Drouin road end. Longwarry kicked with the wind first. Poowong was without Chris Doria, Tom Cotton and Mitch Cochrane a late withdrawal.

Longwarry started off early with three goals and two points before Poowong hit the scoreboard after some solid work against the wind. Tom Wyatt kicked a goal from the boundary, followed by a great mark from young gun Jai Newcombe who goaled for Poowong’s second. From the bounce, Longwarry goaled then added a late goal before the siren for a 20 point lead. At quarter time, the score was Longwarry 5.2 .32 and Poowong 2.0 12.

Poowong was working harder, tackling better and putting on more pressure in the centre. With the wind blowing down the ground, it had the opportunity to turn the score board around in the second quarter. Jack Hazendonk, Jayden Sullivan and Batt were playing well with Chivaroli and Jack Commadeur giving some run. Longwarry runners were working hard with Tye Holland causing concern. Poowong opened with a free kick to Hazendonk, which resulted in a goal. Wyatt goaled with a good kick from the boundary for Poowong’s fourth. At half time, the score was Longwarry 7.3 45 to Poowong 4.1 .25.

Poowong lifted its effort all over the ground and contained Longwarry and adding a goal with a great grab off the pack by Hazendonk to add a major with Longwarry adding two points. Losing Tim Hancock with a hamstring was disappointing.At three quarter time, Longwarry led by 27 points 9.5 .59 to Poowong 5.2.32.

The game was a real tussle with Longwarry adding a point before a free kick and a 50 metre penalty to James Doria resulted in Poowong’s seventh but unfortunately Longwarry goaled from a mark on the boundary. Hazendonk marked and kicked a great goal along the boundary followed by a long goal from Trevor Hooker that bounced through and game on. Despite some desperate attempts the siren sounded with Longwarry home by three points. The final score was Longwarry 10.6.66 and Poowong 10.3 63 .

The ANZAC day medal winner was Tye Holland from Longwarry.

The Great Southern Star


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Ellinbank v Yarragon and Nilma-Darnum v Buln Buln match reviews published by Warragul & Drouin Gazette. To view original articles in full online subscribe to WDG here.

Catani v Lang Lang match review written by Hayley Wildes reporting for Pakenham Gazette. To view original article in full online click here.

Nyora v Neerim-Neerim South match review published by South Gippsland Sentinel Times. To view original article in full online subscribe to SGST here.

Poowong v Longwarry match review published by the Great Southern Star. To view original article in full online subscribe to TGSS here.

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