LVFNL Round 3 Football Preview


Grand final rematch on Marong’s turf

A REMATCH of last year’s grand finalists, Marong and Pyramid Hill highlights this Saturday’s third round of senior footy across the Bendigo Bank Loddon Valley FNL.

The Linton Jacobs-coached Marong is chasing its 35th victory in a row when play starts at 2.15pm on Marong’s turf at Malone Park.

The Panthers winning streak began after a loss to the Nathan Fitzpatrick-coached Pyramid Hill in the fourth round of the 2022 season.

Although champion goalkicker Brandyn Grenfell has left the den after kicking more than 300 goals in two seasons, Marong still has a formidable attack.

Main targets in the Panthers forward line are Kain Robins, Ryley Taylor and Ryan Wellington.

At ground level Noah McCaig has often swooped and kicked seven goals so far.

On-ball contests will be vital in this match.

Marong has Michael Bradbury, Lachlan Lee and talented Jonty Davis to take on Lachlan Sidebottom, Ben Knight and Scott Mann.

Big test for Panthers’ defenders Shaun Knott, Richard Tibbett, Matt Willox and Matt Grant against Damon Hemphill, Jaydon Cowling, Jesse Sheahan and Zach Alford.

The Bulldogs will look for big games from Gavin James, Brad Ladson and captain Steven Gunther.

After a bye, Mitiamo is back on home turf at John Forbes Oval to take on Maiden Gully YCW Eagles.

The Jon Varcoe-coached Superoos were held to a goal in the first-round clash with Marong.

Key players for Mitiamo include captain Luke Lougoon, Andrew Cussen, Jack Vinnicombe, Bryce Laird, Brayden Baines and Daniel Walters.

The Eagles have a win-loss tally of one-one, but no points following a 12-point penalty imposed by the LVFNL board for not fielding an under-18 team.

Jointly coached by Shawn Filo, non-playing, and Angus Monfries, playing, Maiden Gully YCW will be determined to mark victory on the Superoos’ ground.

Having brought 211 games of AFL experience to the Eagles, Monfries was best in last Saturday’s clash with the powerful Bridgewater team.

Todd Delaney kicked five goals in the Eagles latest hit-out and will be a major threat to Mitiamo’s chances.

Other players to watch for Maiden Gully YCW are captain Josh Worsley, Thomas Birch, Ed Crisp, Ryan Strauch and Dylan Turner.

Bears-Lagoon Serpentine tackles Newbridge at Gadsden Finance Serpentine Reserve.

The Jake Wilkinson-coached Bears have made a great start by defeating Pyramid Hill and Inglewood.

Big factor is the play of key forward Josh Mellington who kicked 10 goals in both matches.

The Bears are likely to have too much scoring power for Newbridge to stop.

Players to watch in the BLS team include Charlie and Harry Gadsden, Doolan Nihill, Tyler Miles, James Rippingale, and Justin Laird, coach of the previous two seasons.

A tough start to Newbridge’s season rolls on.

The Maroons took on Bridgewater in round one and faced Marong last week.

Hit-outs with Marong are never easy.

Best for Newbridge against the Panthers were Will Daly, Lachie Costelow, Jackson Hufer and Tyler McLeod.

A team jointly coached by Sam Gale, playing, and Daniel Smith, non-playing, to represent Newbridge this round includes Ricky Cathie, Dylan Lloyd, Caleb Argus and Caleb Sanders.

Bridgewater is home to play Inglewood.

Gun recruits to the Mean Machine such as Lachlan Sharp, Lee Coghlan, Andy Collins and Harry Conway have played their part in a hot start.

Sharp has kicked 20 goals to be joint leader in the goalkicking race.

A formidable line-up for Bridgewater includes captain Josh Martyn, Harry Donegan, Charlton Hindle, Jack Neylon, Xavier Walsh and James Naughton.

The Fergus Payne-coached Inglewood is on the rebound from a 58-point loss at home to Bears-Lagoon Serpentine.

Massive test for Blues’ defenders Cody Stobaus, Will Allen, Jack Mills and Callum March who will rely a lot on pressure from up the ground.

Inglewood’s team includes the skilful Liam Marciano and Daniel Polack, Tom Kennedy, Will Allen and Keelan Payne.

Calivil United has the bye.

Loddon Valley FNL senior footy ladder:

Marong 1421 per cent, 8 points; Bridgewater 191, 8; Bears-Lagoon Serpentine 153, 8; Pyramid Hill 240, 4; Maiden Gully YCW Eagles 56, 0; Inglewood 40, 0; Newbridge 35, 0; Calivil United 24, 0; Mitiamo 5, 0.

Leading goalkickers:

20 Josh Mellington, Bears-Lagoon Serpentine.

20 Lachlan Sharp, Bridgewater.

9 Zach Alford, Pyramid Hill.

9 Jesse Sheahan, Pyramid Hill.

7 Noah McCaig, Marong.

7 Kain Robins, Marong.

6 Todd Delaney, Maiden Gully YCW.

6 Bailey Scott, Pyramid Hill.

6 Ryley Taylor, Marong.

6 Ryan Wellington, Marong.

5 Jaydon Cowling, Pyramid Hill.

4 Lee Coghlan, Bridgewater.

4 Nathan Devanny, Marong.

4 Farran Priest, Bears-Lagoon Serpentine.