BY NATHAN DOLE
IT’S second against third as Wycheproof-Narraport meets Nullawil in Saturday’s sixth round of the Goldacres North Central FNL’s senior footy action.
The Demons and Maroons match starts at 2.30pm at Wycheproof.
It will be Wycheproof-Narraport’s first clash with a club which joined the NCFNL after winning last year’s Golden Rivers grand final.
Both clubs have been in great form across the opening five rounds leading into last weekend’s general bye.
The Boe Bish-coached Wycheproof-Narraport has a win-loss tally of 3-1 and a draw.
Among the highs for the Demons were the 13-point win at Donald in round one, and 82-all draw at Boort in round three.
A low was the 16-126 loss at home to Birchip-Watchem, but the Demons struck back a week later for a 100-53 win at St Arnaud’s Lord Nelson Park.
Key players in the Demons’ charge to second on the ladder include Gedd and Koby Hommelhoff, Josh Walsh, Spencer Allan, and Lachlan Van Schaik.
Four quarters is what is may take for the Demons to take the points against the Brett Barker-coached Nullawil.
The Maroons made a stunning arrival when they beat reigning premier, Birchip-Watchem by 41 points at round one in Birchip.
Since then Nullawil has defeated St Arnaud and Charlton.
First and only defeat for the Maroons was by 44 points at Sea Lake in the fourth round.
Players to watch for Nullawil include Dean Putt, Patrick Kelly, Matt Quigley, Adam and Mark Thomson, and Zac Caccaviello.
Another big match will be at Wedderburn’s Donaldson Park where the Redbacks take on Birchip-Watchem.
Both teams are locked on eight point premiership points and are fifth and sixth on the ladder.
Wedderburn won a hard-fought clash in Boort by two points.
Darcy Jackson, Jordan Rosengren, Louis Holt and Corey Lowry played key roles as the Redbacks won 69-67.
Key players in the Sam Barnes-coached Wedderburn team include Jacob DeAraugo at full-back, Tom Campbell, Danny Benaim, and Adam Postle.
Wedderburn also has Luke and Rhordan Holt.
The Trevor Ryan-coached Birchip-Watchem is on the rebound from a 70-75 loss at home to Donald in round five.
Best for the Bulls in that match were Lachlan Ryan, Dale Hinkley, Nicholas Rippon and Nathan Gordon.
Birchip-Watchem will be without Ben Edwards who is a runaway leader in the NC goalkicking race on 27.
The Bulls will have Nathan Gordon, Lochlan Sirett and Sam Simmons as main targets in attack.
Other key players for the Bulls include Jos Builder and Marshall Rippon.
Donald is back at home to take on St Arnaud.
A five-point win at Birchip’s George Cartwright Oval ensured Donald is well and truly in contention for a top-five finish.
Best for the Rohan Brown-coached Donald in its second win of the season were Feeny medallist and gun on-baller Ross Young, along with Sam Dunstan, Ryan Hards and Josh Potter.
Runner-up in ’22, Donald still has the likes of Ryley Barrack, Ryan Bath and James Wall in action.
It’s another big test for the A.J. Bourke-coached St Arnaud as it aims to rebound from a 47-point loss at home to Wycheproof-Narraport.
Best in the latest hit-out for the Saints were Jake Male, Brad Organ, Jacob Tillig and Mitch Birthisel.
Charlton is back at home to take on the ladder-leading Sea Lake Nandaly Tigers.
The Navies made their way to Nullawil last round and were beaten by 15 goals.
Best for Charlton in that match were Cobi Fitzpatrick, Sam and Rhyen Woods, and Harrison Taylor.
The Andy Nisbet-coached Navies have the experience of Travis Baird, Jaydon Cowling, Tim Hill and Anthony Judd which will be important against a powerful Tigers’ line-up.
The Navies will also look to Daniel and Riely Thiesz, Jackson Zagame and Patrick Soulsby to compete strongly.
Sea Lake Nandaly has had an extended break as it had the bye in round five.
Most recent clash for SLN ended in a 44-point win at home against Nullawil.
Tigers’ co-coach Billy McInnes kicked six goals and looms as a big threat to the Navies.
A powerful Tigers’ team includes co-coach Bryce Delmenico, ruckman Ryan O’Sullivan, Kane, Trent and Wade Donnan, and Will Simpson.
Others to watch in the yellow and black include John Summerhayes, Brodie Adcock, Matt Elliott, Matt Farrelly and Austin Mertz.
Boort has the bye.
North Central FNL senior footy ladder:
Sea Lake Nandaly 214 per cent, 16 points; Wycheproof-Narraport 96, 14; Nullawil 198, 12; Boort 121, 10; Birchip-Watchem 172, 8; Wedderburn 104, 8; Donald 101, 8; Charlton 43, 4; St Arnaud 32, 0.
27 Ben Edwards, Birchip-Watchem.
16 Sam Dunstan, Donald.
16 Gedd Hommelhoff, Wycheproof-Narraport.
15 Billy McInnes, Sea Lake Nandaly.
15 Adam Thomson, Nullawil.
13 Sam Barnes, Wedderburn.
12 Mitch Farmer, Nullawil.
11 Tom Campbell, Wedderburn.
11 Daniel Castellano, Birchip-Watchem.
11 Cody Green, Wycheproof-Narraport.