It was a week the Golden Square Bulldogs would like to forget.
It started with Adam Baird and Braydon Welsh copping suspensions at the BFNL tribunal and finished with a 63-point loss to Gisborne in the first semi-final.
Gisborne kicked six goals to one in the first term and Square never looked like getting back into the game.
To rub salt into the wounds, star defender Jon Coe was reported in the final quarter of the game for striking Gisborne midfielder Matt Goodyear.
"They (Gisborne) were just too good. I reckon that's the best footy they've played, especially against us,'' Golden Square coach Bernie Haberman said.
"They were cleaner, stronger and better organised around stoppage.
"They worked away from the contest better than us. They showed us up, particularly early.
"We thought it might only take eight goals to win the game and they had six on the board by quarter-time."
Skipper Jack Geary played through the finals despite suffering a leg infection which restricted his running ability.
Golden Square finish 2019 in fourth place - two spots higher than 2018 - but still a fair way off the top three sides.
"We added to our depth this year, which was important after we really battled for numbers in our reserves last year,'' Haberman said.
"On today's result we need to add some talent and retain what we have.
"Indications are we won't have anyone leave. Maybe Brad Eaton might decide not to play and I'm not sure what Travis Baird's plans are.
"The great thing is that Travis got through the finals unscathed in terms of injuries.
"We certainly need more talent because there's a gap to Gisborne and Eaglehawk and, right now at least, it appears there's another gap to Strathfieldsaye.
"Our top-end talent is pretty good, but our bottom six is not as strong as some of the other clubs."
Square had three under-18 players - Braydon Vaz, Zack Shelton and Alex Jenkyn - in its senior side on Sunday.
"They're going to be good senior players for the club going forward,'' Haberman said.
"I think we're more clear about where our list is compared to this time last year."
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