NATTE Bealiba inflicted Newstead’s first loss of the season in a high-scoring, entertaining tussle in the Maryborough-Castlemaine District Football League on Saturday.
The Swans announced themselves as a genuine contender this season with their 18.8 (116) to 15.10 (100) win in what was Newstead’s first game at home for the year.
The Swans were in control at half-time when they led by 32 points, 12.6 to 7.4.
However, the Steaders stormed back into the contest in the third term, piling on 6.4 to 2.0 to cut the deficit to four points at the last change.
The Steaders couldn’t sustain their momentum, though, in the final term as the Swans finished with four goals to two to record the 16-point win.
The experienced Brent Mortlock, Kurtis Torney and Jacob Long were the best for the Swans, who had Matt Stagg (five), Jason Hunt (four) and Zac Perez (three) combine for 12 goals.
Captain Mark Ramsey booted five goals for the Steaders, who also had Daniel Christmas, Cameron Hepburn and the in-form Tom Ruggles play top games.
• Campbells Creek beat Maldon for the first time since 2005, belting the Bombers by 85 points.
The Creekers unleashed a brutal opening quarter, slamming on 11.4 to 2.2 to lead by 56 points at the first break before going on to win 21.10 (136) to 7.9 (51).
In a win that moved the Creekers a step closer to trying to break their 15-year finals drought, Adam Pollock was a dominant force up forward, booting nine goals.
Pollock was among a spread of 11 goalkickers for the Creekers, whose best players in their fifth win were led by Jayson Gilbert, Josh Hutchinson and Josh Adamson.
Maldon has reached the halfway mark of the season winless and on the bottom of the ladder.
Hayden Kelly, Braedan Turtle and Chris Mulholland battled hard for the Bombers. Kyle Winstanley kicked three of their seven goals.
• The improved Royal Park defeated Harcourt for the first time in more than a decade.
Bushy trailed by one point at the final change after the Lions had grabbed the momentum during the third quarter.
But wth the game up for grabs, Bushy kicked 2.4 to 1.0 in the final term to win 10.15 (75) to 10.6 (66) and bounce back from two losses in a row.
Brendan Birch (three goals), Taylor Stewart and Brendan Murdoch were strong performers in the win for Bushy as they continued their push towards their first finals series since 2006.
Harcourt dropped out of the top eight with the nine-point loss. Alexander Purdon, Brendan Josey and star midfielder Paul Chaplin were the pick of the players for the Lions.
• Lexton held Trentham to just one goal in its 139-point thumping of the Saints.
Led by a 10-goal haul from gun full-forward Matthew Brown - his second of the season - the Tigers crushed the disappointing Saints 23.9 (147) to 1.2 (8).
The game was already over by quarter-time when the Tigers led 8.3 to 0.0 on the way to their seventh win in a row.
As well as Brown, the Tigers also had Damon Aspland, Dylan Barr and Lachlan Murray (two goals) star in the rout.
Trentham’s sole goal was kicked by its best player, Craig Whelan, in the second quarter.
• Talbot climbed back into the top eight after belting one of its bogey sides, Avoca, by 98 points.
The Hawks raced out of the blocks, leading by 41 points at quarter-time and extended their advantage at every break to win 24.12 (156) to 9.4 (58).
Trent Barras (five), Joshua Parsons (four) and Karl Gunther (four) kicked 13 goals between them for the Hawks, with Gunther and Barras the best for Talbot.
Cameron Holland kicked four of Avoca’s nine goals. Alec Wilthshire and Thomas Nankivell (two goals) were other good players for the winless Bulldogs.
• Reigning premier Navarre belted Rovers by 112 points to continue its undefeated season.
The ladder-leading Grasshoppers won 25.12 (162) to 7.8 (50), with Ash Driscoll and Cody Driscoll both kicking six goals.
The loss ended Rovers’ two-game winning streak. Karson Guareschi kicked three of their seven goals.
• And an inaccurate Carisbrook proved too strong for Dunolly, winning by 72 points.
The Redbacks moved into the top four with the 12.21 (93) to 3.3 (21) victory over the Eagles.