BEARS LAGOON-SERPENTINE V PYRAMID HILL - 2.15pm Saturday at Calivil.
Since 1995: BL-Serpentine 23; Pyramid Hill 21.
Last final: 2014 qualifying final - BL-Serpentine 13.13 (91) d Pyramid Hill 12.13 (85).
This season's meetings:
Round 6: Pyramid Hill 17.14 (116) d BL-Serpentine 17.9 (111).
Round 15: BL-Serpentine 13.17 (95) d Pyramid Hill 7.6 (48).
Qualifying final: BL-Serpentine 13.13 (91) d Pyramid Hill 12.13 (85).
A SHOT at premiership glory against Bridgewater next week awaits the winner of Saturday’s Loddon Valley Football League preliminary final between Bears Lagoon-Serpentine and Pyramid Hill at Calivil.
It’s the second meeting this finals series between the two sides after the Bears defeated the fast-finishing Bulldogs by six points in the qualifying final two weeks ago.
That game was one of two meetings this year decided by a kick or less - the other being in round six when the Bulldogs won by five points.
While they are still chasing their first flag since 1950, the Bulldogs have been one of the region’s most consistent clubs at getting itself into a position to challenge, with Saturday to be Pyramid Hill’s seventh-straight preliminary final.
“We know it’s going to be a very tough game against a quality side... you don’t play ordinary sides at this time of the year,” Pyramid Hill coach Paul Grayling said.
“But the way we finished against them last time when we came home with a wet-sail will give us some confidence.
“We were really good against them last time for the first 15 minutes of the game and for the last 15 minutes, but we’ll need to put together four quarters this time.
“Their midfielders kicked nine of their 13 goals last time, so we’ll need to tighten up in there and get a bit more out of our mids, as well as our forwards to be up and about.”
The Bulldogs are coming off a 29-point first semi-final win over Marong last Sunday in a game where Balraj Singh, Bryden Morison and Gavin James led the better players.
The Bears, who have the advantage of an extra day break, were beaten by Bridgewater by 53 points in the second semi-final last week, but were still within striking distance of the undefeated reigning premiers at three quarter-time.
Tim O’Hare, Gareth Bowes and Andrew Gladman were the Bears’ best last week.
“We don’t think we played that bad last week, it was just that Bridgewater was so good,” Bears coach Damien Featherby said.
“Our form in the second half of the season has been encouraging. That’s when we’ve played our best football.
“There hasn’t been a lot in two of the matches we’ve played against Pyramid Hill, but we’re confident we can get through.”
A win would propel the Bears into their second-consecutive grand final against Bridgewater, who they lost to by eight points in last year’s decider.
TALE OF THE TAPE
Won: 12. Lost: 6.
Average for: 107.8. Against: 84.4.
Quarters won: 44/72.
Won: 13. Lost: 5.
Average for: 100.2. Against: 74.4.
Quarters won: 42/72.