VICTORIA and Sebastopol have battled their way back into contention with consecutive victories in Ballarat Geelong premier league bowls on Saturday.
The Vics took Lara to the cleaners with a 114-65 victory at Victoria, to strengthen their hold on a top four position.
The Kookaburras also remain well in the hunt, clawing back from a possible four rinks down loss to defeat Webbcona at Webbcona 90-83.
“All four rinks were down at afternoon tea, with Andrew Myers’s team down by one shot, Simon Cornock’s down by two, Ian Warner’s by four, and Brad Oates’ by 11,” Sebastopol side manager Rob Baker said.
“The afternoon tea break can often see a change of momentum. A lot of clubs can do worse, while others can go better after the break. Against Ocean Grove we were up overall at the break and then lost by 44 shots. We’ve always performed better before the break in the past so it was great to see the guys turn it around.
“I think the green was consistent and the weather didn’t change. Perhaps they might have been a bit overconfident and maybe it fired our guys up a bit.”
Most rinks were tight contests, with Cornock and co the biggest winner with a 28-23 triumph over Ben McArthur.
Warner’s team got up by three shots against Ash McArthur 19-16, and Myers by the same margin over Tony Wood, 23-20.
Oates’ side was behind by as many as 12 shots, but drew level before Brett Mahoney’s four got a few big numbers towards the end.
Baker said the match was an important one in the context of the season for both sides.
“It would have been a huge blow for us to lose. Webbcona is one of those mid-range sides, like Lara, we need to beat if we are to make finals. I would have said that if we’d lost too,” he said.
In contrast to the close contest at Webbcona, Victoria comprehensively won all four rinks against its Geelong opponent.
Barry Clark’s team defeated Damian Cotter’s 27-11, Jarrod Burt’s four defeated James Derham 30-19, Shaun Clark’s team beat Rob Smith’s 31-16 and, in the closest match-up, Wes Lennecke’s team defeated Mathew Crane’s 28-19.
In the battle of the Geelong titans, Geelong West and Ocean Grove finished on 88 apiece. West won three rinks, with Johnnie O’Donnell, Craig Elliot and Stewart Shuttleworth up, with Ken Thomas scoring two points for the Grovers.
Highton enjoyed a comfortable 101-79 victory over Central Wendouree, securing all 18 points, while Bareena scooted to the top of the table with a 130-68 demolition of Avenue at Bareena.
LADDER: BAREENA three wins, 48 points; GEELONG WEST two wins, 44; VICTORIA two wins, 40; OCEAN GROVE two wins, 39; Sebastopol two wins, 29; Highton one win, 22; Webbcona one win, 20; Lara one win, 19; Avenue zero wins, seven points; Central Wendouree zero wins, two points.