SANDHURST’S pace and skill overpowered Gisborne as it broke the Bulldogs’ unbeaten run in Saturday’s 10th round of the Bendigo Bank Bendigo Football Netball League senior footy action.
Seventh on the ladder before play at Queen Elizabeth Oval, Sandhurst worked hard to be within a point of the league leaders at half-time.
In the third term it was the Ash Connick-coached Dragons who fired up to score 6.3 to 1.2 in one of the team’s best quarters of the season.
There were plenty of contributors as the Dragons’ run and link from half-back, through midfield and into attack put the Bulldogs’ defence under extreme pressure.
Matt Thornton and Joel Wharton led the attack on three goals, but the Dragons also had Lachlan Zimmer kick two goals to cap off excellent teamwork.
Among the many positives for the Dragons were not only scoring 58 points in the second half, but limiting the powerful Gisborne attack to a tally of 9.7 for the complete match.
The only multiple goalkickers for the Rob Waters-coached Bulldogs in their first hit-out on the finals venue this year were captain Pat McKenna and Harry Thomas with two each.
Brodie Montague’s ability to win many contests and set up attacks earned best afield honours as Liam Ireland, Cooper Smith, Isaac Ruff, Jeremy Rodi and Zach Pallpratt featured in Sandhurst’s best.
Gisborne’s best were Liam Spear, Jack Reaper, Jake Normington, Harry Thomas and Braidon Blake.
As many of the stars from the ’72 premiership team watched on, Golden Square dominated its clash with South Bendigo at Fur Life Oval in Golden Square’s Wade Street.
The Bulldogs led 52-19 at half-time and did not let up as they scored 14.4 to 4.4 after the main break to complete a 140-47 victory.
The hard-running and skilful Jake Thrum kicked five goals in a best afield performance as Jayden Burke added four goals, and Joel Brett, Ricky Monti and Hamish Morcom chipped in with two each.
Best for the Christian Carter-coached Golden Square included Jack Hickman, Terence Reeves, Morcom, Monti and Burke.
It was another disappointing result for the Bloods against their long-time nemesis.
The only multiple goalkicker for South Bendigo was Oscar White on two.
Best for the Nathan Horbury-coached Bloods were Isaiah Miller, Zac Hare, Oscar White, Andrew van Heumen, Sam Langley and Alex Smith.
Maryborough kicked off its 150th year celebrations by putting in another spirited showing against Kangaroo Flat at Princes Park.
The Roos led 30-28 at half-time and then upped their play to score five goals and held the Borough to a goal in the crucial third quarter.
Although faced with a 28-point deficit going into the last term, the Rick Andrews-coached Maryborough lifted to win the quarter, 32-20, as the Flat won the contest, 82-66.
Lachy Wilson led the Kangaroos’ attack on five goals as Sam Barnes and Ethan Roberts added two.
The Magpies’ leading goalkickers were Jake Postle, three; Jai Howell and Brady Neill, two.
Talented on-baller Mitch Trewhella won plenty of the footy to be best afield for the James Flaherty-coached Kangaroo Flat as Campbell Smith, Mitch Collins, Jake Hywood, Liam Collins and Ethan Roberts played well.
Best for Maryborough were Kya Lanfranchi, captain Coby Perry, Liam Latch, Thomas Gardam, Aidan Hare and Lachlan Hull.
Stung by its lowest senior score in club history the previous round, Strathfieldsaye was snarling as it took to Eaglehawk’s turf at Canterbury Park.
Storm surged to a 35-9 lead at quarter-time and added 3.4 to 2.1 in the second term.
Led by the play of Jake Moorhead, Callum McCarty and Mitchell Hallinan, Strathfieldsaye kicked on to win 83-57.
Kallen Geary booted three goals and Jake Hall added two.
The Hawks’ attack was led by Noah Wheeler, three, and Darcy Richards, two.
Best for the Darryl Wilson and Shannon Geary-coached Storm included Daniel Clohesy, Tim Hosking and Caleb Sheahan.
Wheeler, Ben Thompson, Dillon Williams, Kobe Lloyd, Joel Mullen and Billy Evans played well for the Travis Matheson-coached Eaglehawk.
Nine goals by Kyneton star Rhys Magin against Castlemaine lifted his season tally to 45 and just two off the lead for the Ron Best Medal.
The Paul Chapman-coached Kyneton marked a sixth consecutive victory in another superb performance at Tigerland.
The Tigers led 29-nil at quarter-time and scored 6.5 to 2.2 in the second term.
It was a nine-goal blitz by Kyneton in the third and another seven in the last to complete a 170-44 victory.
Magin was the number one target in attack, but Kyneton also had Guy Dickson kick six goals.
Castlemaine’s leading goalkicker was Brad Keogh on three.
Best for Kyneton were James Gaff, Rhys Magin, Louis Phillips, Guy Dickson, Harrison Huntley and Louis Thompson.
Tommy Horne, Declan Slingo, Brendan Josey, Will Moran, Sam Nettleton and Tyson Hickey worked hard for the Don Moran-coached Magpies.
Bendigo FNL senior footy ladder:
Gisborne 247 per cent, 36 points; Strathfieldsaye 187, 32; Golden Square 242, 28; Kyneton 133, 28; Sandhurst 135, 20; Eaglehawk 109, 20; South Bendigo 90, 20; Kangaroo Flat 56, 12; Castlemaine 32, 4; Maryborough 27, 0.
There will be some big matches played in the 11th round next Saturday.
South Bendigo tackles Eaglehawk at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
Gisborne and Kyneton meet at Gardiner Reserve.
Strathfieldsaye and Sandhurst clash at Triple M Park in Tannery Lane.
It’s the all-Magpies showdown between Castlemaine and Maryborough at Camp Reserve.
Kangaroo Flat faces neighboring Golden Square at Dower Park.
Leaders in the race for the Ron Best Medal, senior goalkicking award:
47 Joel Brett ,GS.
45 Rhys Magin, Kyn.
33 Pat McKenna, Gis.
31 Jayden Burke, GS.
25 Brock Harvey, SB; Cobi Maxted, Sh; James Schischka, S’saye.
24 Cameron Manuel, Kyn.
23 Josh Kemp, Gis.
21 Joel Wharton, Sh.
20 Lachlan Sharp, S’saye; Lachy Wilson, KF.
19 Kaiden Antonowicz, SB; Darcy Richards, Eh; Braydon Vaz, GS.
16 Chris Freeman, Mb; Matthew Merrett, Gis.; Matt Thornton, Sh.
15 Kallen Geary, S’saye; Liam Marciano, Eh.
14 Lachlan Zimmer, Sh.
13 Matthew Panuccio, Gis.; Mitch Rovers, KF; Jack Scanlon, Gis.
12 Guy Dickson, Kyn.; Ryan Pretty, Kyn.; Ben Thompson, Eh; Jake Thrum, GS.
Written by Nathan Dole.