NORTH Ballarat City have defeated a depleted
by a whopping 94 points in an emphatic display at Eureka Stadium today.
In a match that failed to reach any dizzying heights, the Lions went goalless in both the second and third quarters.
North simply ran riot.
From the outset of the match it was apparent the day was going to belong to the black and white.
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Jake Hicks goaled in the opening minute after a Sunbury-50 metre penalty.
In an ugly first quarter, just 10 points separated the sides at the first break.
Sunbury captain Jay Cheep played no further part in the match however, suffering a suspected broken nose courtesy of friendly fire from teammate Pat Cariss.
Jack Sullivan also went down early in the second quarter, leaving the Lions with just two on the bench.
From that point on it was sheer dominance by North City.
Superior ball movement, an unstoppable forward line, brilliant passages of play, North had it all.
Shaun Lyle booted three goals in the third quarter, Derick Micallef finished with five majors after kicking a goal after the final siren, while young Mitchell Johns chipped in with four goals.
Ayden George sat out the entire second half with his tracksuit on, with coach Rob Waters taking every precaution with George's slight calf niggle.
"We played well and stuck to our structures, it's pretty simple," Waters said.
"For finals though, it makes no difference whatsoever. They (Sunbury) tried a couple of things, it might backfire, it might not, it might be a blessing in disguise. They are under a lot of pressure internally now.
"Obviously I'm not stupid though, they had a lot of their senior players out. There is bigger fish to fry for both sides next week."
Sunbury coach Rick Horwood lamented his side's poor ball use.
"Our disposal was putrid. Full credit to them they played well and we didn't," he said.
"Our endeavour and attack early in the quarter was good. We won't be reading much into it though, we won't be taking too much out of that."
The result means Sunbury slips to third position for the first time this year and also means it will be forced to play an elimination final next week against Ballarat.
In other matches, Redan did as expected against by easily defeating Melton, meaning the maroon and gold leapfrog the reigning premiers to finish in third spot on the ladder.
The Western Lions have now set up a qualifying final against North Ballarat City next week.
In predictable fashion, Redan kept Melton to just three goals to win by 61-points.
East Point put the foot down in the final quarter to defeat Bacchus Marsh by 35 points, while their opponents next week, Darley, beat Melton South by 57 points.
In the final game of the round, sixth-Ballarat defeated Sebastopol by 49 points to subject the Kookaburras to winless 2013 season.