Sweet 16 for top dogs

NEWBOROUGH took out the Mid Gippsland Football League minor premiership in style with its 16th consecutive victory.

The Bulldogs have held down top position for eight weeks and finished the home and away season with only one defeat to their name.

They took their round 18 game against Yarragon a bit lightly in the first half and had to work hard for scores.

With nothing to lose the Panthers threw everything at the Dogs in a competitive opening half of football.

After half-time it was a different game as the premiership favourites ground down the opposition, showing what to expect in the finals by adding a further 11.8 (74) to Yarragon’s 2.1 (13) in the second half to win 17.14 (116) to 4.5 (29).

Mick Gelagotis was picked at half back but switched forward to kick five goals with help from James Todd’s bag of four.

Best for the Dogs were Damon Hansen, Stuart Robertson, Anthony Rosato and Mat Slattery.

For Yarragon James Harvey, Nick Pratt, Robert Cahill and Mitchell Jolly finished off the season with best player awards.

Newborough will have a week’s rest while the first round of finals are played next week.

Not all is lost for Yarragon as their reserves have made the post-season and will play in Sunday’s elimination final.

IT was Boolarra’s turn to celebrate and finish the season on a winning note by defeating Trafalgar for just the 11th time in their 100 clashes.

The Demons eventually saluted by 32 points, doubling Trafalgar’s score.

Trafalgar was never going to win but did lead by a few points at the first break.

Both teams struggled in windy conditions which marred the game as a spectacle.

Boolarra came back in the second but inaccurate kicking and a tight Trafalgar defence contributed to the Demons missing golden opportunities.

With nothing to gain except bragging rights both teams went in hard in the second and third quarters and it became a dour struggle with Boolarra leading at the three-quarter-time break by 32 points.

It was one goal each in a low-scoring fourth term, which looked more like a game of kick-to-kick as both teams fought hard to score.

Boolarra outlasted Trafalgar to win 9.10 (64) to 4.8 (32) and bring to an end a disappointing season for both teams.

MORWELL East had a pressure test a week early in a competitive match against fellow finalist Yallourn-Yallourn North.

The Hawks had a taste of what may be in store when they front up to Yinnar in the elimination final and rose to the occasion for three of the four quarters against the Bombers.

Windy conditions didn’t suit either side but they both adjusted with some accurate shooting at goal.

By half-time YYN was up by 42 points after its forward line had more run of the ball.

Tim Phillips was dangerous around the goals and Barry Brooks also came under notice, while Thomas Hutton was close to top form on return after injury.

A four goals to three third quarter by the Hawks closed the gap by three-quarter time but they were not prepared for the last 30 minutes of the match as YYN ran riot, blasting goals from all angles.

The Bombers set up goal practice and added 10.2 (62) to one goal to finish the match off 20.5 (125) to the East’s 8.1 (49).

Phillips and Brooks finished with five each and Hutton nabbed four in the big total.

The backman kept the competition’s leading goal scorer to three majors which brought his tally to a creditable 84 for the season.

THORPDALE finished the season on a winning note with a 64-point victory over Hill End.

For the second successive week Hill End was leading at the first break but couldn’t keep up the pressure and allowed Thorpdale back into game in the second.

By half-time there was little between the two sides with Thorpdale leading by seven points.

Reappointed coach Nick Brown got Thorpdale going in the third with a couple of goals and brought his players into the game.

There was more talk and fewer mistakes as the Blues started to play strong football.

Josh Collie picked up a couple of goals and Scott Clark came under notice with a brace as the Blues extended their lead by seven goals to go in at a comfortable position by three-quarter-time.

Hill End was flat in the last term while Thorpdale scratched around with a couple more goals.

In the end it was a strong victory for Thorpdale, 17.11 (113) to 7.7 (49).

Brown kicked four and Collie three for Thorpdale

It was curtains for Thorpdale but Hill End is still in the hunt for a flag with its thirds making the finals.

WITH little to play for but form ahead of finals, the Mirboo North and Yinnar match was a tug of war between two competitive sides.

The Tigers finished the day ahead by 37 points and will carry momentum into the first week of the post-season.

Mirboo North led at every change and gave Yinnar little chance of overtaking it.

The match was played in extremely cold and windy conditions and it seemed Mirboo North was more suited to the arctic freeze, running hot at times.

Kris Berchtold fired up on the forward line with a good tally of five goals but the game never reached top quality amid seemingly endless stoppages.

Mirboo North ran out winners 13.7 (85) to Yinnar’s 7.6 (48).

Qualifying final (at Boolarra)

Saturday, 27 August

Seniors: YYN v Mirboo North

Reserves: Yinnar v YYN

Thirds: Yinnar v Newborough

Fourths: Mirboo North v Trafalgar

Elimination final (at Mirboo North)

Sunday, 28 August

Seniors: Yinnar v Morwell East

Reserves: Mirboo North v Yarragon

Thirds: YYN v Hill End

Fourths: YYN v Yinnar