The Central Highlands Netball League top four were all firing in the final week of the home-and-away season as the competition was narrowed down to eight.
In a round which saw all of the top eight sides face bottom eight opponents, no upsets were registered.
Reigning premier Springbank finished off its unbeaten season with a thumping 75-goal triumph over a lacklustre Smythesdale side, while Skipton cemented second spot with and effortless win over Carngham-Linton on the road.
Bungaree overcame Creswick to hold onto the final place in the top four, and Learmonth returned to the winners list with a comfortable 41-goal success against Beaufort.
The Lakies will front up for a finals campaign depleted of some of their key weapons. Goal shooter Nancy Costello sustained an injury last week’s draw with Dunnstown, and has been ruled out for the rest of the year.
Learmonth coach Jordon O’Keefe said his side would have their backs to the wall going into the first week of the finals.
“From our point of view it’s going to be a very tough finals campaign,” O’Keefe said. “We will be taking it week-by-week and we will be relying on a few B-grade players, but the season starts afresh next week so anything can happen.”
The Lakies will have to face Skipton in the first qualifying final, which will be held at Learmonth next Sunday. Despite the Emus finishing in second on the A-grade ladder, O’Keefe said he still believed they were the competition front-runners.
“I’m glad we’re playing them in the first week because I think they’re the benchmark in terms of match-ups.”
In the other qualifying final, Springbank will face off against Bungaree at Dunnstown next Saturday. Buninyong will face Newlyn at Bungaree in the first of the elimination finals, while Dunnstown and Ballan will do battle at Waubra for the remaining place in the second week of finals.
In other results, Newlyn was too good for Rokewood-Corindhap, while Ballan got the better of Hepburn. Buninyong was an emphatic victor over Clunes and Dunnstown cruised past Daylesford. Waubra also defeated Gordon.
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