What a time for Cora Lynn skipper Tim Payne to slot his 19th senior goal.
With just a minute and 14 seconds remaining in the final term on Saturday, a frantic snap from Payne sealed victory for the Cobras for the first time in their history against the reigning premier, Inverloch-Kongwak.
The Sea Eagles have well and truly had the Cobras’ measure since the inception of the West Gippsland Football Netball Competition prior to last season. They defeated them four times in 2017, including a 95-point hiding in last year’s grand final, and inflicted another loss in the opening round of this season at the Sea Eagles’ nest. So it’s no exaggeration to suggest that Saturday’s result was particularly significant for David Main’s side.
While Saturday was “just” for the four points in one sense, it realistically meant much more for the belief of such a young side. When asked about the importance of the four-point win 10.10 (70) to 9.12 (66) Payne acknowledged its significance,
“because of the opposition”.
“Although IK weren’t at full strength, their depth and the way they go about their football makes them a difficult proposition at any time,” he told the Pakenham Gazette in the wake of the contest.
“So as a team is was great to get some validation; to reinforce to the guys that we are capable of playing really competitive, strong football that will hold up against quality opposition. We’re not where we’d like to be yet, but if we take the right lessons out of it, then a win like Saturday helps us get there.”
Payne said his side’s forwards put in some particularly strong efforts late in the game on Saturday to create repeat stoppages inside their attacking 50.
“The clock sort of dictated that the defenders push down and match their numbers around the ball, ” Payne explained of the contest’s closing stages.
“Rylan Smith, competing in the ruck, showed the presence of mind to knock the ball forward clear of the congestion, and thanks to a great contest from Shaun Sparks the ball fell in front of me and I was lucky enough to have time to get it on the boot.”
The Cobras’ lead-by-example full-back couldn’t have picked a better time to add to his senior goal tally, but went on to explain that Saturday’s result was really only significant if his side continued to build on it.
“If we can apply what we’ve learnt over the first half of the season to the back half, then we should be competitive in every game we play. If we take care of the effort, that should hold us in good stead for the rest of the season and give us a chance to play finals.”
“It’s exciting to be a part of such a young group that can see that challenge ahead, and is really working hard to go after it.” Payne said his side’s midfield set the tone with the way it competed at stoppages on Saturday, led by ruckman Billy Thomas and the in-form strong-bodied Chris Johnson. And he was also quick to praise fellow backman Shaun Sparks, who he said was particularly effective in helping to organise the defence.
“The most exciting aspect was the ability of our younger players to execute under pressure in a difficult contest,” he added. “Guys like Luke Hartley, Lachlan Micelli, Brayden Weller and Thomas Stiglich were all able to do their job, which is all we ask of them.”
Russell Bennett

Pakenham Gazette

Dalyston earned their second win for 2018 with a gritty 13-point win over cross paddock rivals Kilcunda-Bass at home.
Favourite son Declan Kelly pulled on the black and white stripes once again after returning home from Port Douglas due to an eye injury that could’ve kept him away from football. But true to character ‘Big Red’ didn’t let that stop him, and was a welcome inclusion indeed doing his part in the tough win.
The wet and wild conditions made scoring a difficult task with only six goals being kicked for the entire game, the first one coming just before quarter time thanks to a brilliant pick up and snap from Magpie forward Jacko Brooker.
The Panthers controlled the play early in the second with multiple opportunities. Taylor Gibson had a good l00k but his effort barely scraped in for a behind. In the blink of an eye Joe Alexander’s kick from the wing landed at the top of the Magpies’ attacking 50 where quick hands led to Rhys Harrop slotting a great goal from 40 metres out. After several attempts on goal the Panthers finally registered their first major midway through the second thanks to a brilliant centring pass from Gibson to Jean Bezzene who converted from, 25 metres out. The Magpies held a one goal lead at the long break as the rain continued to fall and the dark clouds made it difficult to see.
Dalyston started ,the third in style with an intercept mark from an errant Panthers kick in which released Tylah Osbaldeston to launch a bomb from the 50-metre line, a brilliant goal. But the Panthers answered quickly with Bezzene kicking his second keeping the lead within their grasp. The slog continued for the rest of the quarter with neither team able to hit the scoreboard. Still clinging to a six-point lead at three quarter time.
The Magpies were urged by coach Paul Brosnan not to get complacent and finish the job. Panthers’ forward Jimmy Phillips missed a golden opportunity to draw level early in the final term, with his kick fading right. Both backlines were superb in the final quarter, with every attack on goal spoiled and cleared up the ground. As the clock was winding down, a stoppage deep inside the Magpies’ forward 50 resulted in onballer Kainen Schrape evading a tackler and putting the icing on the cake with a left foot special.
South Gippsland Sentinel Times

Garfield bounced back strongly with a comfortable victory over neighbours Bunyip, 13-11 (89) to 6-4 (40).

The Stars kicked three goals to one in the first term before gradually building to a handy 29 point buffer at the final change.

Four goals to one in the final term delivered a comfortable victory that saw the Stars climb back to fourth on the ladder.

Tyler McDonald and Daniel Johnson each kicked three goals, while Daniel Helmore, Jonathon Sauze, Michael Wallace Nicholas Macente and Zane Harper were also key players for the Stars.

Dylan Gallasch, Nathan Allen, Simon Strang, Brandon Allen, Matthew O'Halloran and Beau Deason were the better players for the Bulldogs.

Warragul & Drouin Gazette

Wins don't come much sweeter than they did for Koo Wee Rup over Phillip Island at Denhams Road on Saturday.
In the fight for an all-important top two finish, Ben Collins' men were already up to their necks in it, but both he and Phillip Island counterpart Beau Vernon knew how important victory would be on Saturday for the two title aspirants. Island stars Nick Higginson, Brendan Kimber, Jaymie Youle, and Zak Vernon all loomed large to start the contest and it was their side that got the early jump restricting the Demons to just a solitary point in the first quarter, and to just one goal and five scoring shots throughout the entire first half.
Vernon' s instructions to his side at quarter time - such as linking up with hands through the centre corridor whenever possible - were heeded. But the Dogs still had plenty of improvement to come, particularly in the on-field communication department.
While Zak Vernon continued to find space, throughout the second term and Jimmy Taylor maintained an ever-dangerous presence forward of the centre, the Demons seemed in desperate trouble far more than their 14-point half-time deficit would suggest. And the bake they received from Collins at half~time indicated as much. Koo Wee skipper Tim Miller and key position stalwart Craig Dyker were under siege throughout the opening stages of the contest, and it was much to their credit that the Island hadn't skipped further ahead.
The likes of Luke Walker and Nathan Muratore had their trademark influence on the contest, but the evenness of the visitors' contributions across the board caused all sorts of headaches for the home side. Vernon was clear, that the third term could well be their side's most important quarter all year, but Collins' message was received even louder by his own side.
The fuse had been lit it was up to the Demons to ignite. That's precisely what they did, springing to life through the likes of Mitch Collins now playing a crucial role in the ruck and midfield hard-nut Bailey Galante. But it was a pair of freak goals the first a miraculous 45-metre snap from Jason Wells (three goals), and an even more remarkable effort on the run from 50 on the far flank against the wind from Nathan Muratore that truly gave the home side the ascendency. After trailing by more than two goals at half-time, the Demons then led by 13 at three quarter-time.
"This had nothing to do with coaching or the fans, " Collins said at the huddle with a quarter left to play. "This was all you! "This next 30 minutes is season-defining for us it's the most important for the year.“ The three-quarter-time score remained for more almost seven minutes into the last and it was a Nathan Voss snap that ultimately proved to be the clincher as the young vice-captain's side ultimately snared a 14-point win, 8.11 (59) to 6.9 (45).
“This is why I'm going grey!" Collins joked in a packed home room after the clash.
”Again, that had nothing to do with coach ing, or the supporters' influence it was you 21 blokes."
The second-half turnaround could be highlighted by one key statistic in particular the tackle count. The Demons had 29 in the final term and 94 for the contest, despite recording just 12 in their troublesome second term.
"We know that defensive pressure wins games of footy like this, and that's what turned the game," Collins said to the Gazette in the aftermath.
"That was eight-point game. I said it all week this was without a shadow of a doubt our most important game of the year because if we wanted to finish in the top three, we had to win."
For the second time in as many games against the Island this season, Mitch Collins' ruck role helped completely change the complexion of the contest.
"He had a stinker in the first half, " said his older brother, Ben. "But he turned the game with our midfield, who were just running too loose (early).

 

"We shouldn't be running forward with Higginson in the ruck, who's just that dominant.
"In the second half we locked down, one-on-one. Honestly, I just know how important this game was for us I rate them really, really highly."
Collins added that whoever wins this year's competition would likely have to go through Phillip Island.
"This team here (the Island) they're the real deal, " he said.
And when it's all said and done, the same could be said of the Demons particularly the rampaging, pressure charged version fans saw in the second half on Saturday.
Russell Bennett

Pakenham Gazette

Korumburra-Bena welcomed Nar Nar Goon on a cold and sometimes wet day for football.

The ground was in good condition. Nar Nar Goon kicked to the town end, favoured by the wind, in the first term. The Giants attacked early and Rhys Dixon goaled. Nar Nar Goon responded with strong play to kick two goals. The wind was playing havoc with the ball, but the Giants defended well to stop Nar Nar Goon from adding to its tally. At quarter time, the score was Giants 1.0.6 to Nar Nar Goon 2.3.15.

The Giants started the second quarter well, but only two points resulted with the wind really effecting play. Jake McMillan won a free kick and goaled for the Giants. Nar Nar Goon’s defence was under pressure as the home side continued to surge late. By the long break, the score was Giants 2.2.14 to Nar Nar Goon 2.3.15.

Nar Nar Goon came out firing on all fronts; its strong play enabled it to put the Giants under pressure and it scored three goals. The Giants’ defence did its best against the wind. Going into the last term, the score was Giants 2.2.14 to Nar Nar Goon 5.8.38.

The Giants attacked in the last term but Nar Nar Goon’s defence stood strong and repelled several raids on its goal. The Giants missed a couple of chances but finally broke through to goal. Although they tried hard to score again, the Giants were beaten by the siren. The final score was Giants 3.4.22 to Nar Nar Goon 5.8.38.

The Great Southern Star

Match reviews taken from articles published by South Gippsland Sentinel Times and The Great Southern Star (all instances specified) are viewable online via subscription only. To subscribe to South Gippsland Sentinel Times visit https://subscribe.realviewtechnologies.com/global/subscribe/rvportal/subscribe.aspx?cpid=14264. To subscribe to The Great Southern Star visit https://subscribe.realviewtechnologies.com/global/subscribe/rvportal/subscribe.aspx?cpid=14439

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Koo Wee Rup v Phillip Island and Cora Lynn v Inverloch-Kongwak match reviews written by Russell Bennett reporting for Pakenham Gazette. Original complete articles are available to view online via subscription only. To subscribe to Pakenham Gazette visit https://account.newspaperdirect.com/epaper/accountingregistration.aspx?__utma=103081089.2080146799.1529469035.1529469035.1529469035.1&__utmb=103081089.0.10.1529469035&__utmc=103081089&__utmx=-&__utmz=103081089.1529469035.1.1.utmcsr%3d(direct)%7cutmccn%3d(direct)%7cutmcmd%3d(none)&__utmv=-&__utmk=122035723

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