THE Birchip Watchem Bulls gained the crucial double chance for the Goldacres North Central Football League senior footy finals after Saturday’s round 16 win against Wedderburn.
On a day where two matches were not played because of forfeits, Birchip Watchem took the Redbacks place on the second rung on the ladder.
The clash between third and second on the Bulls’ patch at George Cartwright Oval in Birchip was one of the season’s best.
Birchip Watchem led 15-7 at quarter-time and 28-26 at half-time.
The Redbacks won a hard-fought third term, 17-13 to hold a two-point buffer going into the final quarter.
It was the Bulls who did all the attacking in the last as they slammed on 4.2 to a point.
At the final siren, Birchip Watchem led 67-44.
Wil Sheahan kicked a match-high five goals as Nathan Gordon and Sam Simmons added two apiece.
Wedderburn’s attack was led by Tom Campbell and Ben DeAraugo on two each.
In just his eighth match of the season, Simmons was best afield and had great support from Will Lowe, Brady Hore, Riley Hogan, Gordon and Ruben Vesikuru.
Jackson Guan, Campbell, Jordan Rosengren, Corey Lowry, Luke Holt and Joe Lockhart played well for the Redbacks.
Charlton marked its fifth win of the season as the Navies powered to a 46-point victory against St Arnaud at Charlton Park.
The Navies led 19-8 at quarter-time and 31-22 by the long break.
Charlton won the third term, 19-9, and then kicked clear in the last to score 5.3 to a goal as the Navies won 83-37.
Kris Clifford played a great game to boot four goals as Sean O’Connor and Rhys Thompson added two each.
The only multiple goalkicker for the Saints was Brady Tillig on two.
Charlton’s best were Angus McKenzie, Thomas Finlay, Jordan Collins, Tim Hill, Thompson and Sean O’Connor.
Tillig, Mitch Egan, Thomas Dyke, Mitch Birthisel, Thomas and William Bertalli worked hard for the Saints.
Boort took the points on forfeit from Wycheproof Narraport.
The Magpies and Demons were to have played at Boort Park.
Donald forfeited its clash with Sea Lake Nandaly Tigers at Donald.
There will be no play in the North Central Football League next weekend.
Finals are planned to kick-off the weekend of August 28 and 29 at venues to be confirmed.
Wedderburn and Donald will fight to keep premiership hopes alive when they meet in the first semi-final.
Sea Lake Nandaly Tigers and Birchip Watchem meet in the second semi-final.
Goldacres North Central FL senior footy ladder:
Sea Lake Nandaly Tigers 306 per cent, 40 points; Birchip Watchem 195, 36; Wedderburn 140, 34; Donald 125, 22; Charlton 68, 16; Boort 64, 12; St Arnaud 51, 8; Wycheproof Narraport 43, 4.
28 Daniel Castellano, BW; Billy McInnes, SLN.
27 Will Sheahan, BW.
23 Brendan Goss, D.
20 Will Holt, W.
19 Tom Campbell, W; Wade Donnan, SLN; Cody Gunn, B; Joseph McGrath, C; Rhys Thompson, C.
18 Angus Grant, SA.
16 Ben DeAraugo, W; Braeden Deary, B.
14 Thomas Douglas, SA; Will Simpson, SLN.
13 Leigh Burke, D; Nathan Gordon, BW; Jordan Rosengren, W.
12 John Summerhayes, SLN.
11 Isaac Holt, W.
10 Ross Young, D.
Written by Nathan Dole.