Trafalgar advanced to another Grand Final when they defeated Yinnar on Saturday in the second semi-final at Yarragon. Conditions were almost perfect and Yarragon’s ground was in superb condition.

Trafalgar had to fight all the way against a tenacious Yinnar, the Bloods trailed at every break and had to fightback in a final quarter revival to pip the gallant Magpies. Trafalgar have reappointed coach Clint Einseidel for another year and the club could cap the year with a flag buts that’s another game ahead.

Trafalgar scored the first goal of the match from Ben Doran but Yinnar had two previous shots missing the big sticks. Umpires were asserting their authority early on and three 50 metre penalties showed players how the rules were to be interpreted. Lincoln Albanese posted Yinnar’s first and then followed up with two quick goals by livewire Liam Visser which took Yinnar to a handy 11 point lead at the first break.

Immediately after the break Jim Dowling added Yinnar’s fourth and it looked like Yinnar were smooth sailing, they were moving the ball around giving Trafalgar little chance of possession. Mid way through the term Matt Van Schaijik snapped Trafalgar’s second goal but they were still lagging. Yinnar were playing in front and reaping the benefits although their radar was off as they posted a string of minor score until Liam Visser uncannily scored his third and Yinnar were pushing out to an 18 point lead. Yinnar lost Brad McBride during the term as Trafalgar staged a mini revival, Matt Swenson and Daniel Hayes both goaled for the Bloods to bring them within five points at half time.

It was a dour struggle in the third with neither team gaining any advantage, it was a goal each as defenders keeping the scoring low. Matt Williams and Jim Dowling were working hard for Yinnar and the Van Schaijik brothers were doing well for Trafalgar. The Bloods couldn’t make any inroads and still were behind by four points going into the last term.

Trafalgar pounced from the bounce and within five minutes had overtaken Yinnar, kicking four unanswered goals to grab a handy 20 point lead. Ben Doran scored his second, Daniel Hayes and Jamie Hines all scored to give the Bloods hope. Yinnar dropped their spirit as Trafalgar were relentless in their pressure and Yinnar folded as the Bloods ran over them. Jimmy Dowling raised Yinnar’s hopes with a late goal but it was all over as Trafalgar celebrated their 17 point win, 9-10 to 7-5.

Laurie Williams (Independent observer)



YYN go into next Sunday’s preliminary final against Yinnar after winning the battle of the “Norths” on Sunday at Trafalgar. Mirboo North took on Yallourn Yallourn North in the first semi final. Mirboo North went into the match without Jack Robinson and Riley Oddy but had Clancy Bennett and Winderlich available while the Bombers also had some changes.

YYN led at every change in conditions similar to Saturday although a strong breeze favoured the Northern end. The Bombers were well led by their Coach Barrie Burnett who directed play by example as both strived to beat the strong crosswind. It took YYN’s Tyler Brown 14 minutes to score the opening goal with a long bomb. Kris Berchtold was strong in defence for Mirboo North but the real battle was between the two Coaches Burnett and Josh Taylor. Dean McDonald battled hard for his first goal as the Bombers took an early lead. Winderlich was on target for the Tigers with his first kick to major. At the first interval the Bombers led 2-4 to 2-2.

YYN controlled the second term also the strong wind made it almost impossible to be accurate as play bottled up along the scoreboard side of the ground. The Bombers were keeping Mirboo North under pressure and made it hard for them to score against the wind. Dean McDonald edged closer to the “ton” when he popped through his 99th for the season but the former Essendon Bombers Winderlich showed class with his second goal, a shot from the boundary.

There were lots of stoppages as the windy conditions caused many scrimmages. YYN still led but the margin got to within two points but when Tyler Brown scored his second the lead when to eight points then stretched to 11 by half time as YYN missed some sitters. Dean McDonald was mobbed by his team-mates when he scored YYN’s fifth goal and his hundred only minutes into the third term. YYN were taking control with strong defensive moves bottling the game up on the dead side. Clancy Bennett was a mover for the Tigers with consistent play and Monash Soccer team missed Braden Paulett who was a star on the wing. By three quarter it was still anybody’s match with the Bombers clutching onto a six point lead, but they deserved better results with 15 shots to nine.

Mirboo North struggled to get forward against the wind in the final term as YYN criss-crossed the oval with Burnett, Brown and Hughes all worthy of mention. A three goal final term by the Bombers secured their place against Yinnar next week as they ran out the Tigers in the final to win 8-16 to 6-4.

Laurie Williams (Independent observer)


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