Marong’s reserves aim for unbeaten run to glory
THE unbeaten Marong will start favourite against Pyramid Hill in the reserves football at Bendigo Bank Loddon Valley Football League grand final day on Saturday.
The Jarrod Harris-coached Panthers will be prepared for dogged resistance from Pyramid Hill when they clash at Marist College Bendigo oval in Maiden Gully from 12.30pm.
Marong is aiming for its first reserves premiership since 1994.
Marong marked a 104-45 win against the Bulldogs in round four and won the next match on Pyramid Hill’s turf at Mitchell Park, 94-44, in the 13th round.
It’s been a fine run by the Stephen Donat-coached Bulldogs to the decider as they achieved a win-loss tally of 14-2 in the home-and-away series.
Pyramid Hill kicked off its run to the grand final by scoring a 76-24 win against Bridgewater in the qualifying final played at Marong’s Malone Park.
A week later and the Bulldogs faced Marong in the second semi-final at Gadsden Finance Serpentine Reserve.
Pyramid Hill led 24-22 at three quarter-time, but could not stop Marong’s charge as it added 2.1 to a point in the final term.
Best for the Panthers in the 35-25 victory were Harry Baker, Matthew Willox, Gus Reade and Adrian Pappin.
The Bulldogs’ best were captain Matthew Moon, Mitch Gunther, Brad Moon and Nathan Moon.
A 76-20 victory in last Saturday’s preliminary final against Bridgewater ensured the Bulldogs would earn a crack at Marong in the fight for the premiership cup.
The Dogs led 21-12 at half-time of their latest hit-out and then scored six goals and held the Machine to a point in the crucial third term.
Led by the play of Jacob Heavyside, Rylan Delamere and Oscar Miller, Pyramid Hill kicked on for a big win.
The attack was led by Mitchell Dingwall, Jacob Heavyside, Rowan Pollock and Jordan Simpson with two goals apiece, and singles from Sam Fisher, Mitch Gunther, Thomas Nunn and Luke Padgham.
With a season tally of 94 goals, Rowan Pollock looms as a major danger to Marong’s defence.
Other leading goalkickers for the Bulldogs are Jordan Simpson, 34; Nathan Moon and Nick Skinner on 17 each.
A talented Marong team includes captain Aaron Collins, Patrick and Reece Gretgrix, Kane Newton and Sam Taylor.
The Panthers attack is led by Zack Turnbull 57, David Blume 52, Rhian Hender 22, Thomas Wilson 21, and Tucker Thach 19.
Others to watch in the Panthers line-up are Cameron Berry, Josh Cooper, Brodie Hartland, Rhian Hender, Adrian Pappin and Thorne Wilson.
It could be a big day for the Turnbull family from Marong.
Winner of this season’s league fairest and best in the reserves competition, Zack Turnbull will play a key role in the grand final.
The day kicks off with the Zack Turnbull and Patty Gretgrix-coached under-18s from Marong taking on Bridgewater.
Written by Nathan Dole.