Gippsland Power 11.16 (82)
Bendigo Pioneers 7.6 (48)
LOY Yang B Gippsland Power has often dominated statistical categories throughout the TAC Cup season without due reward, but finally managed to win the count that matters most in a 40-point triumph over the Bendigo Pioneers.
The Power went in without key players Jordan Cunico and Darnell Grech due to injury, bringing Nick Argento and James Jacobsen back into the fold along with state representatives Josh Dunkley and Sam Skinner.
The Power kicked with the advantage of a strong wind in the first term and, while aggressive, was largely off target.
They were punished for inaccuracy when the Pioneers used a rare entry up forward to kick the first goal of the match on the 10 minute mark.
It took a long, direct kick by Tate Marsh to allow Brad Olsson to rove the pack and kick a goal, rewarding the Power’s dominance in general play.
Aloysio Ferreira then cleverly intercepted a Pioneer pass and found the time and space to kick another.
By the first change the Power led by 12 points but it could, and should, have been much more.
They had 12 more forward 50 entries and seven more scoring shots for the term.
The second quarter began brightly when Patullo intercepted a pass and unselfishly set up “Neto” Ferreira for his second.
Forward pressure saw Skinner snap another, before the Pioneers seized the initiative and dictated the remainder of the term with four unanswered goals to lead by a point at half-time.
In the early moments of the third term Alex Carr regained the lead for the Power, which was extended soon after by Ferreira.
The Power continued to press as Tom Papley and Olsson allowed captain Nash Holmes to kick another major for the term.
Late in the quarter the Pioneers kicked their only goal against the run of play and reduced the Power’s lead to 15 points by the final change.
Despite being more productive than in the first term, wasted opportunities from the Power kept the game in dispute.
Again they had 10 more forward 50 entries and 10 more scoring shots.
Kicking against the wind in the final term, the Power was rattled early in the last when a Pioneers free kick was converted to reduce the deficit.
However, Argento allowed Declan Keilty to answer the Pioneers challenge with a goal of his own as the work rate increased.
Carr set a fine example with another long and accurate forward foray which was marked by Ash Di Ciero under intense pressure. His goal extended the lead and, from the resulting centre bounce, Papley again converted under duress.
By the final siren the Power had kicked away to a 34-point victory, their second for the season.
The Power will face Eastern Ranges at Traralgon on Sunday.