A SECOND successive century to Englishman Adam Mates helped Mirboo North post 8/245 against Trafalgar.
Missing several key batsmen, Trafalgar won the toss and opted to bowl first; Jackson Noonan got them off to a fantastic start when he broke through Jesse Giardina’s defence to bowl him for 15.
Tigers captain Shane Peters came in first-drop and added 80 to the total with Mates who was striking the ball cleanly.
Todd Mann created the breakthrough when he had Peters caught behind and snagged Damien Turner in the same fashion next ball.
Leo Connolly claimed the massive wicket of Rob Phoenix who played across the line and skied the ball to Blair Clymo for a duck.
Hudson Kerr helped Mates add 61 before he was caught and bowled by Noonan, and when Liam Durkin bowled Josh Taylor for four the Tigers were 6/166 and the innings could have gone either way.
Veteran Steve Rogers battled hard for his 26, especially after losing Mates for a superb 111 with the score on 186.
Tailenders Connor Williams and Dale Banks eked out enough runs to get the total to 8/245.
Opening partners Mann (3/77) and Noonan (3/58) were the best of the bowlers for the visitors.
MOE Skipper Andrew Philip cashed in after winning the toss to post his third century of the season against Morwell.
The Tigers’ opening bowlers struggled to extract any life from their home deck as Brendan Brincat and Tim Dowe shared just the one wicket between them.
Moe lost Sean Spiteri and Kayne O’Connell in quick succession which brought the destructive Philip to the crease.
Noah Kane and Trent Baldi came and went without having much impact, before Nathan Lee dug in and supported his captain in a 41 run stand.
Rory Hare broke through Lee’s defence to bowl him for 14 then at the other end Lachlan Day dismissed Aaron Walshe and Riley Baldi in quick succession to leave the Lions in dire straits at 7/116.
Zac Rendell joined Philip, then on 46, and held out at the other end as the skipper scored freely.
Philip did not offer a single chance as he cantered to a priceless unbeaten 115 that saw Moe close at 8/198.
The captain added 82 with Rendell who defended doggedly, scoring just nine runs in the partnership.
Philip’s masterclass has given Moe a chance to finish off a lengthy campaign with a consolation victory.
YALLOURN North’s hopes of an outright over Latrobe to stay in contention for a finals berth appear slim at best after posting a middling 159 on day one.
The Bombers batted first and were in trouble early when Chris Johnson had Aidan Vesty caught in the slips for four.
Evan Sheekey marched to the crease looking to have an impact against the club he represented in last year’s grand final, but was caught napping and was run out without facing a delivery.
When Callum Polo gloved one onto his stumps the Bombers were 3/21.
Sri Lankan import Tyron Gamage removed Yallourn North skipper Patrick Spiteri for 22 before nailing Lucas Fry LBW, and when Josh Keyhoe lost his wicket to the spin of Justin Vajler things were looking bleak for the host at 6/59.
Glenn Sheekey (47) and Stephen Pearson (21) added 43 until Vajler broke the stand, before Rowan Kelly and Will Lawrey Jnr dug in and supported Sheekey to get through to 159 when Anthony Bloomfield took the final wicket.
Gamage had the best figures with 3/25 while Vajler was the surprise package with 2/43.
Twelve overs remained in the day for Matt Brewer and Chris Johnson to negotiatie.
The pair successfully handled the majority of the overs before Lawrey Jnr had Brewer caught behind for nine.
The Sharks finished at 1/20 and need a further 140 for first-innings points.
ST Vincents all but extinguished Latrobe Colts’ finals hopes after Andrew Harris (47) and Dylan Smith (32) helped the Saints to 157.
They were hampered by Brendan Briggs who took 5/22 in a middle order massacre.
After a bright start the Colts collapsed in a heap to be 8/86 after Brett Dowdell took 4/32.
Ryan Vink (42*) steered the lower order and came within eight runs of pulling off a famous heist but it was derailed when Zac Brown was run out from a direct hit to break the young Colts’ hearts.
BRENDAN Rooney was the only bat to make it to double figures as Yallourn North was humiliated for 35.
Travis Pickering proved far too hot to handle and claimed 7/18.
Ian Pinkerton bowled well up the other end to snag 3/13.
Thorpdale had little trouble in securing the six points.
JOEL Jacovou’s 60 assisted Moe to post 147 against Jeeralang-Boolarra as only two other batsmen reached double figures.
Peter Gilpin and Luke Heath both took four wickets each.
Tim Laaks (61) and Heath (53*) then made sure of the win.
AT 7/92 the Latrobe Sharks were in deep trouble, leaning heavily on captain Ashley Halkett.
Tailender Trent Roberts (37*) struck the second highest score of the game all the way down at number nine in the order and added 93 with his skipper to get the total to 7/185.
Daniel Farmer was the best with the ball for the home side with 3/38.
Halkett grabbed the first wicket before Jody Capp blew the Bulldogs away with an incredible 8/17, including a hat-trick.
BRODIE Burgess smacked 76 to help Trafalgar reach 6/134 against Mirboo North, with Brandon Bradshaw snagging 3/32 to restrict the Ships.
Declan Allen (43), Ben Williams (33) and Riley Oddy (36) then made sure of the points.
Burgess picked up 2/14.