Sebastopol 8.10 (58) d Darley 5.18 (48)
By Michaelk Hankin
THE unpredictability of football.
There is probably no better way to describe Sebastopol’s 10-point win over Darley at Sebastopol on Saturday.
A significant majority of Ballarat Football League pundits undoubtedly believed the match-up between reigning premier Darley and one of the battlers in the Burra would be a one-sided affair in the Devils’ favour.
However, those who braved the cold were treated to a true spectacle as Sebastopol came from behind to register its second win of the season.
As Darley coach Jarrod Edwards conceded, the match should have been over at half-time when the wayward Devils led by by 10 points with 4.9.
Darley continuously let the home side off the hook in the second quarter by kicking 1.9.
It was a trend that not only hindered the Devils in the second term, but haunted them also in the last quarter as they missed vital opportunities to narrow the margin – culminating in a simple set shot being missed by Rhys Ellis deep into time-on.
A goal would have put the margin to less than a goal, with time to kick another.
For Sebastopol, a side that has been doing it tough for a long time, it was a spirited hard-working victory.
Michael Powell was a star up forward with six of Sebastopol’s eight goals.
Marshall Cain was also resolute in defence, as he looked to counter attack any Darley attempts to boot the ball forward, particularly n the last term.
Sebastopol coach Shane Snibson was elated with the effort shown by his players, speaking about the gradual improvement that he was starting to witness.
“We were disappointed with the match against Sunbury, where we didn’t kick a goal until the last quarter, but then last week against East Point there was a bit of improvement there.
“We have been striving to play consistently for longer. Today we managed to put in four quarters of effort.
“The only way we can win when we kick eight goals is if we defend well, and that takes all 22 guys to manage that so that was really pleasing.”
Edwards could not hide his disappointment after a loss which leaves Darley out of the top on percentage.
“It’s hard to win games of footy when you kick your way out of it, but credit to Sebas they really shut us down and choked us up so well done to them,” he said.
Redan 10.10 (70) d Bacchus Marsh 7.13 (55)
By Tyler Maher
REDAN cemented its place in the Ballarat Football League top six with the win it need to have at Bacchus Marsh on Saturday.
Despite a slow start to the year by their lofty standards, the Lions are well in contention to be a big player in the finals yet again after a 15-point win over Bacchus Marsh.
Redan kept the highest scoring team in the competition – Bacchus Marsh has been 115.25 points a game – to just seven goals with consistent defensive and midfield pressure on the ball carrier.
The Cobras were barely afforded a breath when in possession in a frantic and tough match, which had all the hallmarks of a final.
Redan’s 10 majors came from eight players, with their counter attacking game style regularly seeing numerous Lions streaming forward towards goal unmanned at a frenetic pace.
They controlled much of the game, leading at each break, but were unable to shake the Cobras until the last term.
A Daniel Colbert major to kick off the final stanza looked to give Redan enough breathing space to coast home and this was confirmed when Bacchus Marsh’s Trent Angwin was called for high contact on Damien Horbury before the next bounce.
Horbury duly slotted the goal from the top of the goal square to ensure Redan could put the cue in the rack and ease to an important mid-season victory.
Colbert, Nathan Horbury and Matt Cullinan were big contributors all day, while no-nonsense veteran Ryan Waight and Patrick Britt held up the backline well against the Cobras’ dangerous forward line. Britt kept the dangerous Damian Cupido goalless in a match-defining battle.
For Bacchus Marsh, ruckman Daniel Burton, the lively Lachlan Phyland and Logan Blundell fought hard to keep it in the match.
The win sees Redan firmly in fifth position on six wins – one game clear of Melton, two games inside the top six and breathing down the necks of Bacchus Marsh (third) and North Ballarat City (fourth) on the same points.
Redan coach Eammon Gill said the Lions’ defensive efforts to shut down the Cobras’ attack had been instrumental in getting an important win.
He said the result reinforced what the Lions were capable of, and what they needed to do in the face of a tough draw. Gill said he could not have been more pleased with the performance.
Lake Wendouree 20.18 (138) d East Point 7.15 (57)
The undefeated Lakers made it eight wins in demoralising the Kangaroos by 81 points.
East was kept goalless in the first and third quarters in a display which had coach Glenn Wilkins calling on his players to have some pride in their performance.
East Point, which is just one game outside the top six despite a disappointing season to date, threw everything at Lakers in the opening term, but failed to take opportunities in front of goal. The Lakers were also off target early, but once they hit their straps – led by the fleet-footed Nathan Pring and Andrew Pitson – there was no looking back.
Lakers repeatedly opened up the Kangaroos with quick transition play. More often than not Pitson was on the end of it, finishing with seven majors and it could easily have been double figures.
North Ballarat City 25.16 (166) d Melton South 10.8 (68)
NORTH Ballarat City gave Melton South another tough day out in the BFL at Melton on Saturday.
City was in a class of its own for most of the contest as it ran away by 98 points, with Derick Micallef bagging seven goals.
North Ballarat coach Jordyn Burke said it had been important to bounce back after a disappointing loss to Bacchus Marsh.
As happy as he was with the outcome, Burke said Melton South had taken the game right up to City in the last term.
“They really stuck at it. They were very good.”
The young Panthers matched North Ballarat on the scoreboard with four goals apiece.
Marc Dransman toiled hard for Melton South with three goals, with the support of Shaun White,. Daniel Leggett and Ben Sortino.
Sam Bromley-Lynch and Martin Curtis continued their strong form for North Ballarat, the latter kicking three goals among 13 goalkickers.
Melton 13.9 (87) d Ballarat 10.11 (71)
By Michael Hankin
MELTON remains in the thick of battle to play in the BFL finals after defeating Ballarat by 16 points at Alfredton on Sunday.
The Bloods jumped East Point and Darley to be sixth at the season’s mid-point
An eight-goal first term proved to be the catalyst for Melton
It was a valuable lesson to learn for Ballarat, with coach Ash Baker saying it had been difficult to get back after being down by 45 points.
It was a better showing from Ballarat after quarter time, as it gradually worked back into the contest, but the the odd goal was enough for Melton to weather the storm and hold on for an important win on the road.
Melton coach Brad Murphy praised his side, saying that he thought the first quarter was the best term of footy the Bloods had played since he started his role as senior coach. in 2014.
“It was important to get a result like that, particularly on the back of two successive 100-plus point defeats.”
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