GISBORNE scored the last two goals of the contest as it fought to beat Strathfieldsaye Storm by a point in the Bendigo Bank Bendigo Football Netball League’s senior footy match on Saturday.
It was victory on debut for Gisborne coach Rob Waters as the Storm fell agonisingly short on the Bulldogs’ turf.
There was little between the teams all match.
Scores were 33-all at quarter-time before Gisborne held a 57-53 lead at the long break.
Storm edged a goal in front at a quarter to play and had plenty of the ball in a desperate final stanza.
Just as it was the previous week in a Good Friday loss to Sandhurst, Storm’s inaccuracy proved costly.
The Storm added 1.7 in the last term as Gisborne added 3.2 to seal a 13.13 (91) to 12.18 (90) victory.
One of many gun recruits for Gisborne, Jake O’Brien starred through midfield and closer to goal as he booted three goals.
Jack Scanlon marked his comeback to the Gisborne attack by booting three majors and Thomas Wood added three.
Storm’s attack was again led by Lachlan Sharp, four, as Riley Clarke and Cooper Jones kicked three apiece.
In his first match for Gisborne since crossing from Castlemaine, O’Brien was best afield as Scanlon, Scott Walsh, Zach Vescovi and Ben Eales all played well for the red, white and blue.
Storm’s best were Jake Moorhead, Hunter Lawrence, Jye Formosa, James Schischka and Baxter Slater.
Golden Square made a successful night-time raid on the Tigers’ lair at Kyneton Showgrounds.
The Paul Chapman-coached Kyneton led during the second term, but Golden Square then dominated play.
Led by a nine-goal haul by small forward Jake Thrum it was the Bulldogs who won 165-56.
In his debut as senior coach, Christian Carter was rapt with the team’s pressure inside the forward 50m arc and ability to capitalise on chances as the Bulldogs scored 12.4 to 2.2 in the third term.
Best known for his play as a dashing half-back flanker or from a wing, Thrum was superb in attack, while the strong-marking Jayden Burke added three goals.
The Dogs also had Paul Symons kick three goals in his eighth senior game, and first for the club since 2016.
Best for the Bulldogs were Thrum, Zane Keighran, Burke, Jack Geary and Ryan Hartley.
For the new-look Tigers it was a disappointing start.
Kyneton’s best were James O’Sullivan, Jed Orr, Jordan Mangan, Guy Dickson and Hamish Govan.
The day’s senior footy action kicked off at the earlier time of 12.30pm as Sandhurst took on Maryborough at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
Sandhurst’s young guns were in hot form in a 131-30 victory.
A newcomer to the Dragons after he starred in Kangaroo Flat’s under-18s grand final win in 2019, Mitch Rovers kicked a game-high five goals.
Oscar McKinley added three goals as Matt Thornton and Lachlan Zimmer added two each.
The Dragons led 34-12 at quarter-time, but then charged clear to score 14.13 to 2.6 across the next three quarters.
Jayden Templeton was Maryborough’s only multiple goalkicker on three.
Best for Sandhurst were Lee Coghlan, Lachlan Ross, McKinley, Rovers and Nick Stagg.
Maryborough’s best were Daniel Vadala, Harry Monk, Liam Latch, Lachlan Hull and Thomas Gardam.
Eaglehawk withstood a spirited challenge from Kangaroo Flat under the new lights at S & R Park in Canterbury Park.
The Hawks’ aerial dominance, greater depth in midfield and strong defence were key factors in a 94-21 victory.
Although beaten, there was plenty to like about Kangaroo Flat’s ferocity at the contest.
A major difference was the attacking set-up in which the Hawks had the marking power of Darcy Richards and Shaun Knott, while the Roos battled for marks inside the forward 50m arc.
The Hawks led 43-13 at half-time and then added 7.9 to 1.2 in the last hour of the game.
The skilful Lewin Davis kicked a game-high for goals for the Two Blues as Noah Wheeler, Brenton Conforti, Billy Evans, Sam Harper, Davis and Knott won plenty of the ball.
Best for Kangaroo Flat were Josh Leersen in defence, ruckman Nick Lang, onballer Mitch Trewhella, Thomas Gillespie, Hakeem Johnson and Ben Xiriha.
It was another tough start for Castlemaine as the Magpies took on South Bendigo at Camp Reserve.
The Magpies were first to goal in this contest and score were locked on seven-all at quarter-time as the Bloods were goalless.
South Bendigo peppered the ball inside the forward 50m arc in the second term and added 8.10 to two goals.
By the long break it was the Bloods by 46 points.
South Bendigo was far more accurate in the third term as it added 6.2, but but wayward again in the last.
The Bloods scored 5.10 in the final quarter to complete a 143-37 victory.
The classy Kaiden Antonowicz booted four goals for South as Brock Harvey, Michael Herlihy and Will Keck added three apiece.
Back in Castlemaine’s attack, Klai Jermyn kicked a team-high three goals and Jackson Hood added two.
Best for the Bloods were the skilful and hard-running Zac Hare, Keck, Oliver Simpson, Herlihy and Antonowicz.
David Stephens, Jermyn, Liam Wilkinson, John Watson and Declan Slingo worked hard for the young Castlemaine line-up.
Standings in the Bendigo FNL senior footy:
Sandhurst 220 per cent, 8 points; Eaglehawk 447, 4; South Bendigo 386, 4; Golden Square 294, 4; Gisborne 101, 4; Strathfieldsaye 91, 0; Kyneton 33, 0; Castlemaine 25, 0; Maryborough 22, 0; Kangaroo Flat 22, 0.
Highlight of next Saturday’s second round will be Golden Square against Gisborne at Fur Life Vet Oval in Wade Street.
Maryborough meets Castlemaine in the battle of the Magpies at Barkers Oval in Maryborough’s Princes Park.
Kangaroo Flat and Kyneton will aim to rebound from defeat on the Roos’ turf at Bendigo Mazda Oval in Dower Park.
South Bendigo and Eaglehawk clash at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
The match between Strathfieldsaye and Sandhurst was played as a stand-alone game on Good Friday.
The Dragons won a terrific contest in Storm territory at Triple M Park in Tannery Lane by 13 points.
Written by Nathan Dole