MORWELL’S eight-match winning streak in Gippsland League football has come to a resounding halt at the hands of a formidable Sale outfit.
The reigning premier stole top spot from the Tigers after recording a 34-point win in front of a big crowd yesterday at Morwell Recreation Reserve.
“It’s nice to come and beat the home side on its home track and the boys will take plenty of confidence from that,” Sale coach Matt Ferguson said.
“We are the best team, we are the smartest team, we are the hardest team and we are going to keep building.”
Ferguson said the team prepared well for the much-anticipated, top of the table clash.
“For Morwell, when you’ve won eight games in a row, it’s hard to work on your deficiencies, but us losing to Maffra allowed us to get a bit more pointy with each other and it showed today,” he said.
“We really wanted everyone to stay in the game, stay focused and I thought we were a lot more enthusiastic.”
Morwell coach Harmit Singh said he was disappointed with his side’s first loss of the year, but said they proved they were not far off from the benchmark of the competition.
“They were really good today, they lifted,” Singh said, who addressed his players during a lock-out following yesterday’s game.
“It is only round nine, we will get better, they will get better.
“We spoke about few things… just about how we need to play out the minutes and maintain that level of excellence for a longer a period of time.”
Morwell had the upper hand early after a hard fought first term, with the Tigers in front by four points at the first change.
Sale stamped its authority in the second after it slammed on five goals to Morwell’s one to lead by 23 points at half-time.
The margin at the last change was 27 points, Sale’s way.
The Magpies added just one goal in an inaccurate last quarter, while Morwell also struggled in front of the sticks.
Bairnsdale v Moe
Moe came within two kicks of its first victory of the season for the third consecutive week.
The bottom of the table side travelled east to take on Bairnsdale, a side which is also working hard to resurrect its 2013 campaign.
The match was hard fought from the outset with three points separating the teams at quarter-time.
A four-goal-to-one quarter from the Redlegs saw the home team go into the main change with a 22-point buffer.
The visitors won the third term, albeit by just a point, and trailed Bairnsdale by 21 points at the last change.
The much-improved Moe gave it all it had in the last, but like in the past two weeks against Warragul and Leongatha, ran out of legs.
Leongatha v Traralgon
Traralgon bounced back from its Queen’s Birthday loss to Morwell with a 51-point win over Leongatha.
The Maroons got off to a good start kicking with five goals to the Parrots’ two.
The visitors carried the momentum into the second as it slammed on six goals and kept Leongatha goalless to lead by 59 points by the main change.
Traralgon took its foot off the pedal in the third and allowed Leongatha back into the contest.
The home team added five goals to the Maroons’ two to be back within 35 points at the last change.
However, the Maroons were not about to concede the four points for the second time in a week as it kept the home team goalless in the last while adding two majors of its own to record a 51-point victory.
Maffra v Warragul
Maffra burst out of the blocks with a four-goal-to-one opening term against Warragul.
Maffra managed to extend its lead slightly to 19 points in a low scoring third term with just one goal scored.
Both sides managed two majors in the last as Maffra ran out 21-point winners.
Drouin v Wonthaggi
Wonthaggi remains a game clear in third spot after posting its seventh win for the season.
The Power got off on the right foot against Drouin and never looked back to record a 40-point victory.