ANOTHER chapter in the fierce rivalry between Golden Square and Sandhurst will be written in this Saturday’s 11th round of the Bendigo Bank Bendigo Football Netball League’s senior footy action.
It’s Love The Game round for the BFNL and other leagues across AFL Central Victoria region.
The Bulldogs and Dragons clash at Fur Life Vet Oval in Golden Square’s Wade Street.
There is plenty at stake for both clubs.
Sandhurst will be fighting to hold top spot, and Golden Square wants to stay third after climbing to the rung last round.
The Ron Best Memorial Shield was up for grabs when these clubs last met on April 24 in the third round at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
The match honoured legendary goalkicker and premiership star for the Square and Sandhurst in Ron Best.
The Dragons led 81-51 at three quarter-time and withstood a spirited fightback by the Bulldogs to win 93-91.
Oscar McKinley and Joel Wharton kicked three goals each for the Dragons as Lee Coghlan, James Coghlan, Lachlan Ross and Chris Down starred.
The Bulldogs’ attack was led by Joel Brett, four, and Jake Thrum, three.
Captain Jack Geary, Matt Compston, Ryan Hartley and Liam Barrett played well for the blue and gold.
At selection for this match, Golden Square brought in Liam Duguid, Will Lee, Jack Merrin and Zavier Murley for Lachlan Humphrey, Ricky Monti, Jack Stewart and Paul Symons.
Key players for the Bulldogs include Jon Coe and Zack Shelton in defence, Ryan Hartley in the centre, Jayden Burke and Tom Strauch in attack, and rover Terry Reeves.
Sandhurst regains key defender Sean O’Farrell.
A talented Dragons’ attack has the marking power of Matt Thornton and Oscar McKinley, and the skilful Nick Stagg, Lachlan Zimmer, Joel Wharton and Mitch Rovers roving the contests.
Liam Ireland, Martin Leyden and Noah Walsh team well in defence, while the Coghlans, Blair Holmes and James Mittell set up many attacks.
Kangaroo Flat takes on a Gisborne line-up on the rebound from defeat.
The Roos will have home-ground advantage at Bendigo Mazda Oval in Dower Park, but the Bulldogs start hot favourites.
Kangaroo Flat has brought in Daniel Dempster, Mitch Holt, Jake Hywood and Hamish Lockhart for Jack Barras, Tom Gillespie, Ryan O’Keefe and Lachlan Wilson.
Players to watch for the Roos include captain Nick Lang in the ruck or attack, the pacy Hakeem Johnson, ruck-rover Mitch Trewhella, and young ruckman Max Johnson.
The Roos’ defence faces the daunting task in stopping Gisborne captain Pat McKenna after he was goalless the previous round.
Gisborne has brought in Nic Doolan, Sam Graham, Josh Kemp, Sean Merrett, Jake Normington and Harry Thomas for Luke Ellings, Bailee Revell, Jack Scanlon, Frank Schipano and Sam Wilson.
A powerful Bulldogs’ line-up includes Jack Reaper and Casey Summerfield in defence, Brad Bernacki in the centre, Jake O’Brien at half-forward, and Scott Walsh roving.
South Bendigo tackles Kyneton at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
The Bloods will be desperate to improve their goalkicking accuracy.
When these clubs last met, South Bendigo won a great battle, 90-80 at Kyneton Showgrounds.
Bloods’ coach Nathan Horbury is back on-field, along with Daniel Johnstone.
Kaiden Antonowicz kicked six goals for South Bendigo last round and looms as a major threat to the Tigers defence.
Other key players for the Bloods are Brayden Torpey and Zac Hare in defence, Oli Simpson and Oscar White on the wings, Brock Harvey and Cooper Leon at half-forward, and ruck-rover Brody Haddow.
The Paul Chapman-coached Kyneton showed plenty of fight in the second half of last Saturday’s clash at Golden Square.
The Tigers have added Hamish Govan and Josh Smiley to the squad, but Ben Cameron and Louis Thompson are out.
Kyneton’s best against the Bloods earlier in the season were Evan Davie, Jordan Mangan and Hamish Govan.
The strength of Ryan Pretty and Guy Dickson will test the Bloods, while Harrison Huntley, James and Ned O’Sullivan, Rhys Magin and Cameron Wallace are capable of winning plenty of contests.
Castlemaine takes on Eaglehawk at Camp Reserve.
The Magpies have brought in Jordan Cochrane and Jackson Hood for Kyle Gellatly and Will Moran.
A Castlemaine defence led by Liam Wilkinson, Riley Pedretti and Ethan Maltby is likely to be in for a busy afternoon.
The development of Callum McConachy, Sam Nettleton, Brodie and Jackson Byrne, and the return of Jack Chester have been highs in a tough run for the Magpies.
The Hawks thrashed Kangaroo Flat last round and will be keen to keep building momentum.
Key players for the Borough include Gedd Hommelhoff, Shaun Knott, Darcy Richards, Oscar Madden, Jack Dye, Noah Wheeler and Billy Evans.
A challenging run for Maryborough does not become easier as the Magpies host Strathfieldsaye at Barkers Oval in Princes Park.
Ins for the Magpies are Aidan Hare, Michael Humphrey, Brady Neill, Coby Perry and Fraser Russell.
Onballers Bailey Edwards, Matt Bilton and Jayden Hooper have fought against the odds every game.
Strathfieldsaye Storm has surged to second on the ladder and in ominous form as it chases back-to-back premierships.
Ins for Storm are Patrick Blandford, Jakob Finch, Bailey Henderson, Lachlan Monti, Jed Rodda, Lincoln White and Jordan Wilson for Harry Conway, Caleb Ernst, Kallen and Shannon Geary, and Caleb Sheahan.
A powerful attack is led by Lachlan Sharp and Cooper Jones, while Jack Neylon, Kellan Smith and Jake Moorhead were among the best last round.
Bendigo FNL senior footy ladder:
Sandhurst 195 per cent, 36 points; Strathfieldsaye 220, 32; Golden Square 174, 32; Gisborne 198, 28; South Bendigo 151, 28; Eaglehawk 179, 20; Kyneton 68, 12; Kangaroo Flat 41, 8; Maryborough 44, 4; Castlemaine 15, 0.
Written by Nathan Dole.