Drouin made it a running treble of wins to close out its season when it eventually wore down Wonthaggi in a hard-fought contest in balmy conditions at Drouin on Saturday. There might not have been a place in the finals at stake but both sides played with the intensity of as if there was. It took Drouin took until well into the last quarter to seal the win. The Hawks kicked 6-7 to 3-2 in the final term to run out 26-point winners, 13-17 to 10-9.
The Power boys battled hard in what was coach Stuart Gilmour’s last game at the helm but were unable to get the chocolates for their beloved leader.
Pat Ryan again kicked off the scoring for Wonthaggi after a back and forth battle for the opening 10-minutes led to the forward getting on the end of a beautiful snap from the boundary. Elliot Staley also got on the scoreboard late in quarter to give the Power a four point lead at quarter time.
The second quarter saw the game blow open, with a lot more run and carry from both sides which allowed for more scoring opportunities. Ed Morris and Liam Anderson started to get their hands on the footy for the Hawks, with Josh Seri and David Olsen converting in front of goal. Tom Murray nailed his set shot for the Power as did big man Jordan Staley who nailed a long bomb from behind the 50m arc. An incident on the wing between Power young gun Lochie Scott and two Drouin opponents ended in Scott and his opponent being yellow carded. Scott was joined by teammate Riley Lindsay in the sin bin after he also came to remonstrate with the Hawks players. Leaving the Power one man down for the back end of the quarter assisted the Hawks in controlling the quarter and go into half time with a three-point lead.

Ben Eddy and Tom Davey were able to kick crucial goals for the Power who appeared to be gaining some momentum. But When Ed Morris and Tom Barr steadied the ship the home crowd Hawks were flying high. Despite the best efforts of skipper Aiden Lindsay and back flanker Will Lenehan, the Power struggled to keep up with the Hawks who really put the foot down in the final quarter.
At times in the first three quarters Wonthaggi got out to leads of around two goals and looked as if it might break away. Drouin’s resilience and determination that has been a feature of its play over the past five to six weeks came to the fore again. There were no easy kicks, a lot of packs and plenty of full blooded tackles. Power was showing similar determination to the Hawks, two goals in two minutes midway through the final quarter reducing the gap to seven points after goals to Jordan Kingi, Jeb McLeod, Eddie Morris and Tom Barr in the first eight minutes had opened a more than handy break for Drouin. A run of seven behinds kept Wonthaggi at arm’s length before a couple of late goals to the Hawks pushed the final margin out to 26 points.
There were many important contributors in Drouin’s win. On-baller Eddie Morris has had terrific season but his game on Saturday might well have been the best of the lot, capped off by three crucial goals. Two of them in two minutes late in the second quarter got the Hawks back to within one point at the long break. Bob McCallum was dominant in the ruck and around the ground and the defensive group made another big contribution to a win. James McKellar was inspirational with some of his smothering, attacks on contests and tackling. He and fellow backmen Wayne Morris, Liam Anderson, Joe Collins, David Miller, Clayton Kingi and Brendan Gower have been key elements in the Hawks’ much improved late season form.
But the credit can go right down the team sheet. Tom Barr on a wing, Jeb McLeod, Liam Axford, Michael Laszezyk and David Olsen have all led by example. The side is also finding more ways to score. On Saturday Morris got three goals when resting forward, Barr, Olsen and Josh Seri kicked two each and David Miller, McLeod, Jordan Kingi and Jamie Ferguson chipped in with single goals.
Warragul & Drouin Gazette and South Gippsland Sentinel Times


Leongatha was too good for Sale during their final round Gippsland League football clash.

The Magpies were heavily depleted, with unforeseen circumstances meaning forced changes had to be made to the selected side, lost at Leongatha 14.15 (99) to 6.4 (40).

Because of a plethora of injuries to senior players, some thirds players were made to back up from a morning game into senior football. This forced different changes and roles for players, which no doubt affected the side’s capability on the day.

In a high-standard clash, the ball was moving with ease for both teams, and the conditions were conducive to fast, open football.

Jarrod Freeman was making use of the space up forward and kicked the Magpies’ first two goals.

Leongatha also had a forward who was relishing the ideal conditions.

League-leading goal kicker Chris Dunne kicked all of the Parrots’ three goals as they took a one-goal lead into the first break.

The Magpies also began the second quarter well. Withstanding the Leongatha pressure, they were able to gain good forward entries but couldn’t hurt the Parrots on the scoreboard.

A missed shot resulted in Leongatha breaking the shackles and kicking two goals in a row.

A smart goal by Brad McKay from a loose ball, courtesy of a strong tackle, began to reel the margin in, and Freeman took a nice mark from a Kane Martin pass to kick another major.

The problem was Leongatha was responding, the Parrots’ running from half-back in numbers, the front-on pressure and numbers behind the ball meant every Sale error was pounced on.

Brad Dessent kicked another goal, but the margin had grown to 26 points by half-time.

Sale found it tough in the second half, as Leongatha controlled the play, while little fumbles showed the Magpies were just not at their peak.

Forward Jack Allman provided a spark for Sale, his goal gave the visitors some hope, unfortunately was the Magpies’ only goal for the quarter.

The Parrots only kept the margin from getting out further through their own inaccurate kicking — seven behinds keeping the margin respectable. At three-quarter-time, Sale trailed by 39 points.

The Magpies tried defiantly in the final quarter, Martin working hard in tight, but it seemed every forward entry or good passage of play Sale had resulted in one handball too many or a fumble. This allowed the Parrots to apply their pressure and force stoppages or gain control of the football.

Sale didn’t kick a goal for the quarter, while the Parrots booted three as the home side won by 59 points.

For the away team, there weren’t too many players who played their best games for season 2018, it was just one of those days.

Jordan Dessent’s marking and competitiveness around the ground was good. McKay tried to give the Magpies plenty of run and carry though the midfield, and Zac Hurley was Sale’s best defender, his high marking and ability to jump at the contest noticeable.

Andrew Quirk had an intriguing battle with Leongatha forwards Lloyd and Lockwood, his defensive work solid as always.

The returning Jack Mapleson showed off his skills in patches, while Martin battled hard throughout the day.

The five under 18 players — Jack Allman, Luke Williams, Zac Hurley, Max Reeves and Jack Mclaren — all showed glimpses of why they can be important players for Sale now and in the future.

Sam Anstee - Gippsland Times


Maffra earned the Gippsland League football minor premiership, and a week off to begin the finals, after a 32-point win at Moe on Saturday.

After their 10.18 (78) to 6.10 (46) victory over the Lions, the Eagles finished the home-and-away season on top of the ladder, ahead of Leongatha on percentage.

The Eagles began strongly, kicking four goals to one to lead by 18 points at quarter-time.

While both sides kicked a goal each in the second term, the margin was extended to 25 by half-time.

The Eagles dominated the quarter, but weren’t rewarded on the scoreboard, having 10 scoring shots.

With the visitors in control, the Eagles kicked five goals to four in the second half.

Michael Coleman and Jack Johnstone generated plenty of play off half-back for Maffra, Alex and Ed Carr, and Danny Butcher controlled proceedings in the midfield, and Sam Pleming was again strong at centre half-forward. Mitch Bennett kicked three goals.

Moe’s better players were in defence — Tong Long, Darnell Grech, Charlie Rieniets.

The result had no bearing on the Lions’ place in the finals, they will play Traralgon in the elimination final this Sunday at Morwell.

David Braithwaite - Gippsland Times


Traralgon did what they needed to do to hang onto fifth spot and secure a finals berth with a convincing win over Morwell on Saturday, 14.15 (99) to 5.12 (42).

Maroons coach Mark Collison said he was "really pleased" with his side's win.

"I thought we played a really good four-quarter game. We were a bit sloppy in the first half with our disposals and gave Morwell opportunities to score and needed to clean up and we did," Collison said.

"We addressed that at half-time and to come out of the third and fix the things we needed to fix is the sign of a really good side."

Collison said it was difficult to pinpoint a handful of best players given all 22 played their roles.

With eight individual goal-kickers, Collison said his focus was more geared towards "how we get the goals, not who kicks them".

"We definitely don't put any time into having set avenues to goal, but we just like to get a good even spread," he said.

Collison said the Maroons "got through unscathed" and will have a full list to select from for this weekend's do or die clash with Moe, which he said he was "really excited" for.

Kate Withers - Latrobe Valley Express


Bairnsdale emerged three-point winners in a final-round thriller over Warragul on Saturday, 15.12 (102) to 15.9 (99).

The Gulls were an outside chance to play finals heading into the clash but their hopes were dashed early as fifth-placed Traralgon steamed away to a convincing lead against Morwell down the highway.

The home side were 11 points up at half-time but relinquished their lead and were 21 points down at the last break.

Brayden McCarrey was a front-runner for the Redlegs and kicked five goals to finish the season with 41 while Shaun Wyatt kicked three and Alex McLaren two.

All the usual suspects showed plenty up forward for Warragul with Nathaniel Paredes, Brayden Fowler and Luke Di Ciero all bagging three goals.

Kate Withers - Latrobe Valley Express


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Drouin v Wonthaggi match review taken from articles published by Warragul & Drouin Gazette and South Gippsland Sentinel Times. To view original articles in full online subscribe to Warragul & Drouin Gazette here and subscribe to South Gippsland Sentinel Times here

Leongatha v Sale match review taken from article written by Sam Anstee reporting for Gippsland Times. To view original article in full online visit

Moe v Maffra match review taken from article written by David Braithwaite reporting for Gippsland Times. To view original article in full online visit

All other match reviews taken from article written by Kate Withers reporting for Latrobe Valley Express. To view original article in full online visit

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