Phillip Island has continued on its merry way, trouncing a lacklustre Warragul Industrials by 76 points. If not for inaccurate kicking on the part of the Bulldogs – 11.23 – the damage could have been much more severe. Given the slippery, wet conditions messy play was always on the cards. Perhaps the highlight for the club was the first game for 15-year-old wunderkind Mitch Moschetti who was dominant across the half forward line at the wing. His game is one of clean possessions and good decision making. He capped off the performance with two goals, drawing praise from coach Beau Vernon. Kimber and Youll also continued their good form, building on a stellar start to the year. Tomada, Pederson and Zac Vernon were also great for the Bulldogs.
Speaking after the game, Beau admitted it was “hard to get a gauge on where we’re at”. “In the third quarter the boys really put in on themselves to play better. They’re a really good group of players, and they don’t enjoy themselves when they’re not playing well,” he said. “I think we’ve got a really good mix of young blokes and older guys, who are helping to bring those less experienced players along.” The coach said his team was looking forward to a competitive week of footy, with games against Tooradin-Dalmore, top-of-the-table Cora Lyn and Inverloch Kongwak ahead. The Bulldogs remain undefeated, as to Cora Lyn, who has played one more game.The Great Southern Star
Against the bottom ranked Kilcunda-Bass it wasn’t the hardest game Bunyip will play all year but the final scoreline of 16.12 (108) to 3.8 (26) boosted their confidence and their percentage.
Best on ground for Bunyip was Cley Bertoncello, who played through the middle and then dropped back to cover an injured defender. Wherever he played he produced the goods. Bulldogs co-coach Ricky Clark returned from injury and restored class and composure to the side.
Ben Ross was on song booting six goals with just two behinds.
There was talent to waste with 10 Bunyip players kicking goals.
Jones said the comprehensive win was important.
“I can be a bit of a stress head in the box but I was pretty relaxed yesterday. I had a bit of a smile on my face for most of the day.
“We’ve been a bit scratchy, a bit inconsistent with our ball use. On Saturday we had 21 players that were all pretty good. A couple of guys that have been a bit quiet had their best games.
“We were able to outnumber them with a bit of quality around the field,” Jones said
Bunyip’s win comes ahead of a massive game this weekend against Koo Wee Rup. “They’re a really good side, said Jones. “The form we had before the weekend wouldn’t have been enough to compete but the boys have got a bit of confidence out of yesterday, not only in the result but in each other.
“They saw the talent that as coaches we’ve been talking about, but they saw it in each other.” Saturday’s match is at home. Having lost their past two home games, Bunyip will be hoping they can turn it on for the fans.Warragul & Drouin Gazette
On Saturday the Cobras got the jump on the injury-depleted Sea Eagles early, and stood up in the big moments throughout the rest of the contest to remain undefeated courtesy of a 13-point win, 10.12 (72) to 9.5 (59).
Tom McQualter's visiting outfit lost no admirers in their endeavour, but the Cobras passed yet another test placed in front of them.
After losing the first five games they played against Inverloch Kongwak - including both the semi-final and grand final of 2017 - the Cobras have now won the past three to nearly square the ledger.
In speaking to the Gazette after the game on Saturday, Main praised how well his forward line functioned - particularly with the likes of Troy Tharle leading the way.
But he also spoke of how impressed he was with his group's ability to flick the switch after the Sea Eagles responded in the second quarter to take a one-point lead into half-time.
Mitch Wallace was a real standout in defence for the Cobras - particularly throughout the second half against a taller Sea Eagles forward line than many have become accustomed to since 2017.
But it was the work of Chris Johnson and Heath Briggs that was particularly telling, with Johnson establishing himself as one of the premier contested ball-winners of the competition after transforming himself from being a midfield stopper against the likes of Andy Soumilas in the first year of the WGFNC.
Briggs played a defensive half-forward role against arguably the most influential half-back in the competition in Dylan Clark, and his work went a long way towards the Cobras recording their win.
For the Sea Eagles, Lewis Rankin, Tristan Van Driel, Corey Casey and Brendan Iezzi had a real impact despite the result.
It's hard to imagine the Inverloch Kongwak brains trust losing much sleep over the result knowing who's still to come back into the side, Soumilas included.
The most startling result of Round 5 - and one that could set the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons - was Garfield's six-goal win at home over Nar Nar Goon, 13.5 (83) to 7.5 (47).
The Goon entered the clash missing some of its biggest names, and lost Jake Smith in the first term, but that didn't diminish the result for the shining Stars.
The two sides could hardly be separated in the first term, but from the second quarter onwards it was Garfield that stretched away.
With Lachy Hansen missing for the Goon through suspension, the Stars threw gun key defender Michael Wallace forward - and to great effect, booting three goals as one of the clash's most influential players.
In-form midfielder Tanner Stanton was another who was played somewhat out of position - used as a wingman who would push back across defensive 50 to provide support for the Garfield backs.
His high-quality field kicking, long a standout of his game, was again on display as he shone right when he needed to most.
While the Goon was far from full-strength on Saturday, neither were the Stars - missing significant pieces in all parts of the ground.
And that's partly what made the weekend's result so impressive.
Garfield coach Hayden Stanton explained that the side's forward structure was likely headed for change, regardless of Hansen's absence as the logical match-up for Wallace inside 50 for the Goon.
The Stars hadn't been kicking a consistent score, so something had to give.
Stanton highlighted the efforts of James McKellar down back on Troy McDermott, in addition to the performances of Wallace, Ned Marsh, and Rhys Murphy.
Marsh, along with former player-coach Joel Morgan, has returned to the Stars this year and the pair has already had a profound impact.
Jake Blackwood was the Goon’s best on a tough day at the office for Dean Blake’s side.
The Stars are now sitting with a record of 2-3 - just a game back of Bunyip in fifth - and the focus has already switched to the challenges to come.
The Seagulls underscored their status as genuine contenders in the West Gippsland FNC last Saturday with a comprehensive defeat of a Korumburra-Bena Giants outfit that many people thought was on the move.
But it was two steps forward and one step back on the weekend for the Giants, as they failed to trouble Tooradin-Dalmore at any stage, on the scoreboard at least.
To be fair, the Giants were on the backfoot from the outset when they suffered a double blow before taking the field with midfielder Luke Lange and young, 17 year old ruckman Tyler Newton late withdrawals from the team. The first part of the match looked promising enough when Korumburra-Bena was able to match the Seagulls opening strike of two goals in as many minutes with one of their own through Josh Hill. He kicked truly after a mark and a 50 metre penalty.
It was all going to plan with the Giants playing a tightly contest game until they gave up three quick goals in red time and the Gulls were away. Again, the Giants responded after the quarter time break via good team work involving Trewin, Monson and Walker who found Rhys Dixon in good position to goal.
The score made it two goals to five early in term two which didn’t look bad on the scoreboard but the Seagulls were starting to link up better, away from the stoppages, hitting targets at will producing four quick goals as a result. By half time, their bigger, more experienced bodies were a factor and they held a seven-goal lead and looked ominous.
But to the Giants’ credit, they didn’t allow them to run away with it in the third quarter, which was a good sign, limiting them to just one goal for the quarter.
The young Giants applied pressure to the Tooradin ball carriers and they coughed it up, allowing the home side to set up numerous scoring opportunities of their own, including a gold-plated, open-goal chance that was botched near goal, leading to the ultimate insult, a goal to Tooradin at the other end.
It’s those chances that really have to be taken and Tooradin kicked away again in the closing stages, with four goals in the last quarter. Their field kicking was a strong point and they had strengths all over the ground.South Gippsland Sentinel Times
KOO WEE RUP V DALYSTON GAME WAS CALLED OFF.
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Kilcunda-Bass v Bunyip match review published by Warragul & Drouin Gazette. To view original article in full online subscribe to WDG here.
Cora Lynn v Inverloch-Kongwak and Garfield v Nar Nar Goon match reviews written by Russell Bennett reporting for Pakenham Gazette. To view original articles in full online subscribe to PG here.
Warragul Industrials v Phillip Island match review published by the Great Southern Star. To view original article in full online subscribe to TGGS here.
Korumburra-Bena v Tooradin-Dalmore match review published by South Gippsland Sentinel Times. To view original article in full online subscribe to SGST here.