Dogs maul Pies by 120 points

GISBORNE opened its Bendigo Football League season in devastating style on Saturday, crushing Castlemaine by 120 points at Gardiner Reserve.

The Bulldogs raced to a 30-point lead at quarter-time and were never threatened by the Magpies in their 28.15 (183) to 9.9 (63) victory.

Gisborne never tapered off during the game, kicking six goals in the first quarter, seven in the second, six in the third and nine in the last.

Castlemaine kicked five of its nine goals in the final quarter.

"Sometimes in footy - at any level - you don't get a reward for effort," new Gisborne coach Rod Sharp said.

"Our effort over the pre-season was fantastic and today was a good confidence-booster for the effort the boys have put in and that's the way we're looking at it.

"We've still got plenty to work on, no doubt about that, but we're happy enough with how we've started the season."

Key forward Matt Knox cashed in on the Bulldogs' dominance with a bag of eight goals to be among a spread of 10 goalkickers.

Fellow forward Jarrad Lynch added four goals, while first-gamers Callan Haynes and Trent Crosbie and centre half-back Ben Sonogan chipped in with three each. 

"The spread of goalkickers is what our theme is all about... don't rely on one person, rely on everyone to play their role," Sharp said.

The best for the Bulldogs were Sonogan, Knox, first-gamer Isaac Trickey, Lynch, Shannon Greetham and Ethan Minns in what was an even team effort.

Gisborne didn't escape the game without injury. Cameron Medica injured his hamstring, while Michael Thornton hurt his shoulder.

Castlemaine's best players included Zach Hansford, Nicholas Oliver, Jarryd Graham and John Watson. In his one-off appearance for the Magpies, forward Saad Saad kicked two goals.

Mathew Conboy, new forward Tallan Wright and Graham also kicked two goals for the Magpies.

It was a powerful start to the season for all three of Gisborne's football teams as Gardiner Reserve lived up to its Graveyard nickname.

As well as the 120-point win in the seniors, the Bulldogs won by 121 points in the reserves and 159 points in the under-18s.

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