TERRIBLE conditions made it a close round 14 in the Mid Gippsland Football League.
The Bloods thrived in the mud to score their second win with a six pointer over Morwell East, Thorpdale and Yarragon fought out a draw while Yallourn-Yallourn North, Newborough and Mirboo North won their matches without a worry.
IT was survival of the fittest on a heavy ground at Morwell East and Trafalgar fought to win by one goal.
It took courage from both sides to play football under severely adverse conditions.
Trafalgar had to come from behind to snatch the win at the 24-minute mark of the last, but the match could have easily gone Morwell East’s way if it kicked straight.
A third quarter effort of 2.9 (21) to 0.1 (1) did not inspire the Hawks’ camp and by three-quarter-time they had a slender lead of 13 points at 2.15 (27) to 2.2 (14).
Trafalgar only got the ball past the centre twice in the term as play was centred in the northern end of the ground.
Aided by a strong breeze Trafalgar edged closer to Morwell East in a torrid last quarter.
Trafalgar’s Alex Weymouth was crunched in a pack and was stretchered from the field three minutes into the last quarter and play was held up for four minutes which made the difference to Morwell East as Trafalgar won in extra time.
The match edged closer to what could have been an historic draw to match their previous result this season but Trafalgar persevered.
At 24 minutes the scores were level with Morwell East an ugly 2.18 (30) to Trafalgar’s 4.6 (30) but a lucky free kick turned into a 50 metre penalty against the Hawks.
It allowed Trafalgar to score a goal and pinch the lead.
The Hawks forced the ball forward in the dying seconds but time ran out and Trafalgar posted its second victory this season, 5.6 (36) to Morwell East’s 2.18 (30).
“We kept at them, we never gave up and I’m so proud of them for their great effort,” Trafalgar coach Dale Burridge said.
“Now with four rounds to play I’m confident that they can win a couple more.”
THORPDALE scored its equal lowest total against Yarragon, matching its 20 points in 1978, and with only one goal somehow managed to play out a draw.
It was only the second draw between these two clubs in 81 matches.
Thorpdale finished with 1.14 (20) to Yarragon’s 3.2 (20).
It was their lowest ever match aggregate (40 points) beating the previous 58 points in 1980.
Like other games, conditions were diabolical and good football was out of the question as soon as the ball hit the turf.
The draw gave Thorpdale a rough chance of making inroads to fifth position as Morwell East was defeated, making the difference eight points with four rounds to play.
For Thorpdale to gain fifth it will need to win three out of four and Morwell East needs to lose three games.
Scores were level at the first break but Yarragon led at half-time by two points then at three-quarter-time by three.
Thorpdale came back in the last term and in rugby fashion forced the ball forward to score three points while keeping Yarragon scoreless.
Kayde O’Connnell, Nick Fairbank and Jake Atkinson battled hard for Thorpdale while Robert Cahill, Nick Pratt and Ben Egan played well for Yarragon.
IT was a sunny start to the match between YYN and Yinnar but the game got ugly very quickly.
Yinnar kicked to the scoreboard end and it wasn’t long before the Magpies posted their first goal through Jacob Mowat, but conditions got heavier as the rain tumbled and players and umpires found the going difficult.
Barry Brooks goaled for YYN after an assist from Dean MacDonald but it was a big slog as both teams tried to combat the heavy ground.
Both teams scored further goals to level it out at the first break at 2.1 (13) each.
Yinnar had most of the play but was unable to take advantage as YYN bottled up in the backline.
Mowat and Damien Yates gathered plenty of kicks for Yinnar and coach Adam Bailey led by example for the Bombers.
It only took YYN two minutes to break the deadlock in the second term when MacDonald soccered off the carpet.
When Brooks kicked his second it was game on for the Bombers who now had a handy lead.
Most of the play was in the northern quadrant and at times there were no players right of the centre.
YYN’s Bailey was felled just before half-time and a Yinnar player was sent off as a result.
The Bombers kept Yinnar scoreless in the second term to go in at half-time leading by 21 points.
YYN added a further two goals against the wind in the third while Daniel Webster’s goal for Yinnar was to be its last; the Magpies failed to score again as YYN ran out winners 9.9 (63) to 3.1 (19).
Brooks was effective around the forward line with four goals for the Bombers.
Players were almost unrecognisable in their coating of mud.
IN the mental health round match Newborough restricted Boolarra to its lowest ever score of 0.2 (2) in a game which barely reached paddock standard.
Players could not adjust to the mud in the cold and rain, which prompted spectators to head indoors.
Newborough proved far too strong and consolidated top position.
The Dogs adapted better and it was almost one way traffic as they kept plugging away under pressure.
Newborough ran out winners 12.9 (81) to 0.2 (2).
The Doggies shared their goals around with eight players lining up to score.
FROM opposite sides of the league Mirboo North and Hill End struggled in extremely cold conditions.
They equalled their lowest aggregate score of 62 points set in 2011 with Mirboo North coming out winners 6.11 (47) to Hill End’s 1.9 (15).
Hill End had chances in the second term but couldn’t buy a goal, scoring five behinds.
The win was important for Mirboo North as it puts the pressure on top side Newborough.
With only four matches to play every game is important for Mirboo North.
Mitchell Wightman, Joshua Taylor and Kallum Nash were best for Mirboo North while Dylan Briggs, John Warren and Kristian Harper battled hard for the Hillmen.