Crucial victory for Cats

IT was far from pretty, but all that mattered to Lockington-Bamawm United coach Adrian Dohnt was the four points.

CRAFTY CAT: Lockington-Bamawm United's Nathan O'Brien kicks out of defence.

CRAFTY CAT: Lockington-Bamawm United's Nathan O'Brien kicks out of defence.

The Cats consolidated second place on the Heathcote District Football League ladder with a gritty five-point win over Leitchville-Gunbower on Saturday.

The reigning premier only kicked one point in the final term but it was enough to hold on for a 9.10 (64) to 8.11 (59) win.

“It got a bit tight there at the end, but thankfully we were in front at the final siren,’’ Dohnt said.

“We had some opportunities early in the last quarter but didn’t make the most of it. Leitchville kicked their two goals late to put the pressure on us.

“They didn’t get another scoring opportunity which was good.”

LBU kicked with the breeze in the first quarter, but didn’t make the most of it kicking 2.6 to 2.1.

The Cats played their best footy of the match against the breeze in the second term, adding 4.1 to the Bombers’ 1.4 to lead by 20 points at the main break.

The wind died down in the second half, with both sides adding three goals in the third term.

“The style of footy probably wasn’t great to watch… it was a very scrappy and contested,’’ Dohnt said.

“We’re very happy to get the points. We’re in a tough period of the draw at the moment and Leitchville is one of the teams trying to get the double chance, so it was a big game for us.

“Just as importantly we got through without any injuries. We should be able to get two or three more players back next week.

“Hopefully, we can get two or three weeks of good footy into the group leading into the finals. It’s important for us to build some momentum.”

Centre half-back Dan Lucas, Marcus Angove and Trent Bacon were best for the Cats.

The Bombers, who fall to fourth on the ladder, were best served by Jackson McEwen, Jye Keath, Brad Perry and Joel Helman.

The defeat snapped a five-game winning streak for the Bombers.

They have the bye next Saturday before games against Mount Pleasant and North Bendigo that will determine their top three fortunes.

Colbinabbin kept its HDFL finals hopes alive with a come-from-behind win over Huntly on Saturday.

The sixth-placed Grasshoppers couldn’t afford to drop four points to the Hawks and at three quarter time Colbo’s finals hopes were in the balance with Huntly holding a seven-point lead.

The home side saved its best footy for the final quarter, producing an eight-goal to two burst to win 13.10 (88) to 8.13 (61).

“I thought we were the better side in the first half even though it was scrappy and low scoring,’’ Colbo coach Phil Morgan said.

“In the third quarter Huntly’s stoppage work was stronger than ours and their better players got a hold of us.

“We let our lead slip and we looked to be in a trouble going into the last quarter.

“To the boys’ credit they really stepped up in the last quarter and worked hard.

“To win by five goals in the end was pleasing. The boys got some reward for their effort. It keeps our pulse going.”

Colbo ran the game out stronger, despite being down a rotation from early in the match when ruckman Hadleigh Sirett was sidelined with a hamstring strain.

Matt Riordan was superb for Colbo at centre half-back, while Julian Bull took Sirett’s place in the ruck and earned high praise from the coach.

“I thought Bully was outstanding,’’ Morgan said.

“He’s not a six foot five ruckman, he’s only a six foot two ruckman, but he competed very well and did a great job for us.”

Tim O’Dwyer was Colbo’s most prominent midfielder and veteran Linton Jacobs was the best forward on the ground with four goals.

Harry Whittle, coach Stacy Fiske, Matt Jeffries and Braidy Dickens were Huntly’s best players.

The gallant Hawks have pushed Colbo and White Hills in the past two weeks, but have struggled to finish off games.

After losing their past six matches the Hawks will start favourite in their next two games against Heathcote and Elmore.

The game against Elmore might not be as easy as first thought after the Bloods gave Mount Pleasant a scare on Saturday.

In what was expected to be a percentage-boosting win for Mounts, Elmore pushed its high-rated opponents for the majority of the match.

Mounts star Kain Robins was the difference in the end, kicking four goals in a best on ground performance to lead his side to a 14.11 (95) to 9.7 (61).

“We probably went into the game a bit cocky and to Elmore’s credit they were fantastic,’’ Mounts coach Derrick Filo said.

“Elmore had five or six players back into the side and they played some really good footy.

“It wasn’t until late in the game that we really got on top.”

Elmore trailed by just seven points at the main break and 15 points at the final change before Mounts kicked four goals to one in the last quarter.

Matt Gretgrix, Nathan Whipp and Luke Milroy bagged three goals each for Mounts.

“Apart from Kain (Robins), we really didn’t have too many players who played four quarters of good footy,’’ Filo said.

The win lifted Mounts to third on the ladder, but Filo is well aware his side needs to improve if its to remain in the top three.

Mounts final three games are against LBU (second), Leitchville-Gunbower (fourth) and North Bendigo (first).

“I’m not worried about the ladder,’’ Filo said.

“We just have to concentrate on each game. If we keep winning then the ladder will look after itself.”

After being beaten by 30 goals the previous week, Elmore’s effort against Mounts was arguably its best of the season.

Harley Hayes, Phil Wills, Matthew Stokes and Jeff McMurtrie all impressed in an encouraging effort by the Bloods.

They’ll need a repeat of that intensity next week when they travel to Superior Roofing Oval to tackle flag favourite North Bendigo.

A 10-goal haul from veteran forward Damien Webb highlighted North Bendigo’s 121-point win over Heathcote.

Webb and fellow forward Jeremy Mills kicked 14 goals between them in the 24.14 (158) to 4.13 (37) victory.

Ryan Alford, Shaun Kellow and Cam Moore also played well for a Bulldogs’ side that restricted Heathcote to one goal in the second half.

The big win means the Bulldogs now hold a handy one game and more than 12 per cent break on LBU in the race for top spot.

Daniel Carroll, Mitch McLean, Daniel Russell and Marc Millard were best for the Saints.

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