Boolarra sensing that today was the day that they could break their run of 27 defeats came crashing down as Yarragon jumped away from Boolarra in a big first quarter in the wet and cold conditions, the Panthers scoring 5-4 to 0-0. The pain increased for Boolarra as they couldn’t manufacture a score until well into the last quarter but during this time Yarragon were going further ahead leading by 68 points at three-quarter. Boolarra after a stirring three-quarter time address started to show on the scoreboard and finished on par with Yarragon for the term 2-2 to 2-4. Boolarra were outplayed for three terms but stood tall in their last quarter effort as Yarragon ran out winners 12-12 to 2-2. Ten players contributed to Yarragon’s scorecard with Michael Whyte again being best player, Andrew Budge, Brad Wolfe, Paul Carmody and Shane Smith all in the best. Boolarra were well served by Matt Windsor, James Holmes, Sam Mazou and Jesse Giardina back after injury.

Laurie Williams

(Independent observer)

In their 99th match Mirboo North almost condemned Morwell East to watch the final series pass by after beating the Hawks by 51 points in a match marred by a very slippery ground. Weather played havoc but not as bad as the other games in the Valley but still conditions were not ideal. Mirboo North welcomed back Jack Robinson who kicked three valuable goals and Matt Holland into the senior side after spending time in the two’s. Mirboo North have big news as they have Jason Winderlich (ex-Essendon) signed and delivered but whether he plays depends on his fitness. Mirboo North were able to hold Morwell East to only three goals for the match but the East missed good chances denied by pressure and bad weather conditions. Mirboo North running out easy winners 11-12 to 3-9, It was hard to pick out best players in the gloom but serious contenders were Joe Brooks, Hudson Kerr, Josh Taylor and Julian Blackford. For the East Frankie Marks, Brandon Francis, Rob Michaelides and Dylan Field were voted as the best four.

Laurie Williams

(Independent observer)

Newborough and Yinnar recorded the lowest ever aggregate between these two with only 36 points total being scored, it easily beat the former low of 69 points set 60 years ago in the 1958 preliminary final. It was Yinnar’s second lowest score against Newborough with  0-7 the lowest scored in 1989. Neither team had scored any goals up to half time which in itself was a new record but Yinnar held sway courtesy of five behinds. A goal each in the third gave Yinnar a one point advantage by three-quarter but Newborough fighting hard in the conditions managed to score twice in the final term which was enough to give them a surprise win by 12 points reversing the previous match between these two. The two Liam’s Charles and Carrolan scored for Newborough with Tony Battista scoring the third. Jarod Risol, Manny Faustin, Matt Sawyer and Damon Hansen were given as best while Yinnar were well served by Matt Dyke, Brendan Chapman, Mark Stolk and Danny Campbell. Yinnar may be soon boosted by the incoming Michael Stockdale coming from Traralgon.

Laurie Williams

(Independent observer)

In a real slogfest Trafalgar ran out winners over Thorpdale by nine points but had to fight back in the last term after scores were level going into the last stanza. Thorpdale after a sluggish start kept fighting back at Trafalgar to draw level with only a quarter to go. Keeping Thorpdale to only one goal in the last was good but better for Trafalgar was scoring 2-3 to take the match. This was a danger game for Trafalgar and they fought hard against a tenacious Thorpdale to run out winners 6-8 to 5-5. Damian Mann, Daniel Puglia, Conner Noonan and Jamie Hines were pivotal for Trafalgar while for Thorpdale Gavin Low, Jake and Brad Atkinson and Luke Collie were adjudged as best.

Laurie Williams

(Independent observer)

YYN used the conditions better than Hill End to eventually run out winners by 60 points but the scoreboard didn’t really reflect the way the game was played with nine of the goals coming from one end of the ground. Conditions were terrible with Hill End struggling to find their feet, YYN controlled the match with a strong defensive line keeping the Hillmen to only 2-2 for the match. Dean McDonald managed three goals for the Bombers but it was hard work as the scrappy play and slippery ball made it difficult to be accurate. Lockie Little, Luke Webber, Tyler Brown and Conner Hughes were best while Hill End had good players in Josh Hecker, Liam Fitzpatrick, Justin Rea and Rob Fiddelaers.

Laurie Williams

(Independent observer)

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