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A serious elbow injury to utility Lee Marshall was a major dampener in Beaufort's win over Dunnstown on Saturday.
Marshall, who played in the Crows' premiership success last season, suffered a dislocation and is expected to miss about six weeks of football.
Beaufort proved too strong for the winless Towners, prevailing by four goals at home.
Joel Chester had a great day on a wing for the hosts, which also had midfielders Joseph Mason and Lachlan Pfeifer impress.
Top onballer Michael Foster was a late withdrawal on Saturday for the Crows with a knee issue, while Geoff Taylor Medal winner Nick Sullivan made a successful return from a shoulder injury.
For the Towners, Will Henderson, Jack Leonard and Hamish Hallahan shone.
"We played some really good football against Beaufort," Dunnstown coach Justin Abrams said.
"We didn't take opportunities in front of goal which was costly."
BEAUFORT v. DUNNSTOWN
Beaufort 3.0, 6.2, 9.5, 11.6 (72)
Dunnstown 1.3, 3.4, 4.8, 6.12 (48)
GOALS, Beaufort: Lachlan Pfeifer 3, Joseph Mason 2, Alexander Petrie 2, Joel Chester 2, Lachlan Murray 1, Adam Richardson 1
Dunnstown: Matthew Bulluss 3, Hamish Hallahan 2, Mitchell Henderson 1
BEST, Beaufort: Joel Chester, Joseph Mason, Lachlan Pfeifer, Alexander Petrie, Jayden Orr, Josh McDermott
Dunnstown: Will Henderson, Jack Leonard, Hamish Hallahan, Harry McKimmie, Matthew Bulluss, Kade Rattley
Hepburn bounced back to winning form with an emphatic display against Gordon.
The Burras were led by onballer Tommy Horne and forward Sam Dunstan, who booted five goals in the 39-point success.
Hepburn coach Clive Raak said it was the best four-quarter display his side had produced in 2019.
"In those conditions we played really well for four quarters," he said.
Raak said Ken Cummings, Brad McKay and Dan O'Halloran were other standouts in a strong team display.
Gordon, which saw the return of small forward Mick Nolan on Saturday, had Ethan Crackel and Mark Gunnell as best.
HEPBURN v. GORDON
Hepburn 4.2, 11.4, 14.5, 17.6 (108)
Gordon 3.6, 6.9, 7.12, 9.15 (69)
GOALS, Hepburn: Samuel Dunstan 5, Jackson Hogan 3, Bradley McKay 3, Izaac Grant 2, Julian Lockwood 2, Mitchell McKay 1, Nathan Dunstan 1
Gordon: Adam Toohey 3, Jaymes Gorman 1, Mick Nolan 1, Steven Nicholson 1, Taylem Wason 1, James Murphy 1, Brendan Sutcliffe 1
BEST, Hepburn: Tommy Horne, Ken Cummings, Bradley McKay, Daniel O'Halloran, Andrew McKay, Samuel Dunstan
Gordon: Ethan Crackel, Mark Gunnell, Isaac McCabe, Luke Gunnell, Jordan Clampit, Adam Toohey
Buninyong clicked into gear after half time to beat Rokewood-Corindhap by 82 points.
Scores were level at half time, but the Bombers piled on 14 goals after the main break.
"It was a pretty good performance in the second half because the ground was pretty heavy," Buninyong coach Shaun O'Loughlin said.
"It was good for us to get our game going a little bit."
Co-captains Ned Gilbert and Alex Bomitali were among the best for the Bombers, as were Jarrod Rodgers and Morgan Turner.
Buninyong was missing about six players through injury and unavailability, including Jake Dunne who pulled out through illness.
ROKEWOOD-CORINDHAP v. BUNINYONG
Buninyong 0.4, 1.7, 8.9, 15.18 (108)
Rokewood-Corindhap 1.3, 1.7, 1.7, 3.8 (26)
GOALS, Buninyong: Derick Micallef 4, Isaac Baker 3, Alex Bomitali 2, Caius Barrenger 2, Harli Givvens 1, Timothy Brayshaw 1, Aaron Hart 1, Lochlan Stewart 1
Rokewood-Corindhap: Douglas Arthur 2, Jake Carr 1
BEST, Buninyong: Jarrod Rodgers, Morgan Turner, Ned Gilbert, Harli Givvens, Derick Micallef, Nick Shell
Rokewood-Corindhap: Jackson O'Neil, Jake Dowell, Keegan Powell, Ben Reese, Luke Philp, Jordan Grant
Creswick and Newlyn clashed head-to-head on Saturday and it was the stubbornness of the Wickers which got them across the line by seven points.
The home side had the measure of its arch rivals from the start and close checking and hard tackling paid off as the Wickers led at every break.
Every time the Cats managed to break free they were reeled in again and again by the Wickers.
Creswick's Ricky Pearson was a headache for the Cats and he made them pay with three majors.
Ethan Tibbles, Patrick Taranto and Aaron Sedgwick kicked goals for Creswick, but when the going got tough in the final term it was Liam Blake who brought the house down. Blake took a tumbling, rolling mark with just minutes left on the clock and after Newlyn had cut a two-goal deficit to be just a point behind on the scoreboard. The home crowd was silent as Blake lined up his kick and then roared to life as the football sailed through the big sticks.
Newlyn's gun forward and the Central Highlands Football League's leading goal-kicker Marcus Darmody was smothered by a clingy Creswick defence, but he still managed to boot three majors.
Darmody and Chris Eastwell kicked the two goals in the final quarter to challenge the lead.
Creswick's Matt Miller, Tim Rieniets, Joel Antonio and Jack Marshman were tough on the field and took inspiration from the unstoppable leaders Sedgwick and Pearson.
Newlyn's co-coach Dan Wehrung and Adam Sewell tried to urge their teammates on and some like Joel Willmott, Josh Milne and Boe Bish heeded the call.
Creswick and Newlyn have a fierce rivalry and the hard-fought victory coincided with the Wickers' 150th year celebrations and dinner, which got underway afterwards with great fanfare.
For the winning coach Ryan Knowles it was a perfect day.
"A big rivalry. A special occasion with the 150. The dinner for past players and all that. All we asked was for four quarters of pressure," Knowles said.
"And they did. Right to the end. They didn't let up."
For co-coach Christ Dwyer the loss obviously stung.
"Creswick outworked us all day. We played catch-up. It's a wake-up call for us," he said.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Hepburn bounced back to winning form with an emphatic display against Gordon.
The Burras were led by onballer Tommy Horne and forward Sam Dunstan, who booted five goals in the 39-point success.
Skipton has climbed to fifth on the ladder following its two-goal victory over Learmonth, while other games on Saturday saw reigning premiers Beaufort break its run of defeats by beating Dunnstown, Springbank thrash Ballan, Bungaree sneak home at Clunes, Waubra easily handle Daylesford and Buninyong score a big triumph over Rokewood-Corindhap.
CRESWICK v. NEWLYN
Creswick 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 7.3 (45)
Newlyn 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 5.8 (38)
GOALS, Creswick: Ricky Pearson 3, Ethan Tibbles 1, Liam Blake 1, Patrick Taranto 1, Aaron Sedgwick 1
Newlyn: Marcus Darmody 3, Christopher Eastwell 1, Adam Sewell 1
BEST, Creswick: Matt Miller, Timothy Rieniets, Joel Antonio, Jack Marshman, Aaron Sedgwick, Ricky Pearson
Newlyn: Daniel Wehrung, Adam Sewell, Joel Willmott, Joshua Milne, Boe Bish
Tim Horan proved a major presence in attack as Springbank made easy work of Ballan.
The big forward kicked five goals - including a couple of nice majors from the pocket - as the Tigers raced away from the home side after the first change to win by 122 points.
Ruckman Johnathan O'Brien also starred for the victors, which are now eighth on the ladder.
"Jono dominated the ruck, which helped us. He was giving us first use most of the time," Springbank coach Joe Otto said.
Onballers Todd Finco and Kieran Maher were among the other standouts for the Tigers.
In a blow for Ballan, it lost top onballer Darren Tanti to a bad hamstring injury shortly before the final siren.
Defenders Matthew Rollo and Benjamim Bould impressed Blues coach Tristan Batten, who questioned his side's work rate and accountability during his talk at the final change.
BALLAN v. SPRINGBANK
Springbank 2.5, 9.11, 16.14, 21.18 (144)
Ballan 1.1, 2.2, 2.2, 3.4 (22)
GOALS, Springbank: Timothy Horan 5, Matthew Lakey 3, Samuel Harkin 3, Todd Finco 3, William Driscoll 2, Michael Otto 1, Samuel Cue 1, Joel Maher 1, Brett Maher 1, James Thompson 1
Ballan: Beau Runnalls 2, Jaye Johnstone 1
BEST, Springbank: Johnathan O'Brien, Kieran Maher, Kieran Kennedy, Timothy Horan, Sean McKenzie, Matthew Lakey
Ballan: Matthew Rollo, Benjamim Bould, Bradie Thomas, Hayden Thompson, Alistair Hine, Lachlan Conlan
Bungaree's Cam Jackson kicked a goal in the dying stages of Saturday's clash to deny Clunes a rare victory.
Jackson's major gave the Demons a five-point win over the Magpies.
Charles Martin and Matt Geary were impressive for the Demons down back and helped deliver the side its fifth win of the season.
For Clunes, Brody Lawford, Matthew Wrigley and Nic Clarke were named best, while ruckman Mark Paramonov kicked two goals in his long-awaited return from an ACL injury.
Paramonov booted the opening major of the game and was mobbed by his teammates.
Magpies ruckman Jack Fenner was the main injury concern for the hosts after going down with a leg problem.
CLUNES v. BUNGAREE
Bungaree 1.2, 3.6, 5.8, 6.13 (49)
Clunes 1.1, 4.3, 5.6, 6.8 (44)
GOALS, Bungaree: Cameron Jackson 2, Jack Walter 2, Dalton Murphy 1, Noah McIntosh 1
Clunes: Brody Lawford 2, Mark Paramonov 2, Shane Thomas 1, Brad Dolan 1
BEST, Bungaree: Charles Martin, Matthew Geary, Chris Cowan, Samuel Hammond, Jack Oostendorp, Jordan Crone
Clunes: Brody Lawford, Matthew Wrigley, Nic Clarke, Barama Blow, Josh Thompson , Brad Dolan
Skipton landed a crucial win for its finals chances at Learmonth on Saturday.
The Emus scored a 12-point win over Learmonth, one coach Greg Middleton said showed his side could "win ugly".
Middleton gave a pat on the back to onballer Kal Dubbeldam, forward Jack Peeters and defender Xavier Lourey in the win.
Learmonth coach Nick Willox said injuries hurt his side on Saturday.
Willox twinged a hamstring, as did defender Conor Dickson, while Nick Bone had a chest issue that is likely to see him spend a few weeks on the sidelines.
The club gave a senior debut to young Connor Smith, who found a place in the Lakies' best.
"We had our chances but just didn't execute properly," Willox said.
LEARMONTH v. SKIPTON
Skipton 2.2, 4.3, 6.8, 8.12 (60)
Learmonth 3.1, 4.4, 5.5, 7.6 (48)
GOALS, Skipton: Jack Peeters 2, Andrew Pitson 2, Adam Romey 1, Mark Hoare 1, Kal Dubbeldam 1, James Cusack 1
Learmonth: Anthony Zelencich 2, Aaron Wilson 2, Kyle Mackay 1, Hamish McKee 1, Nick Willox 1
BEST, Skipton: Jack Peeters, Cooper Henson, Xavier Lourey, Kal Dubbeldam, Brayden Draffin, Hamish Young
Learmonth: Brenton Powell, Kyle Mackay, James Pratt, Oliver Ross, Jye Rich, Connor Smith
It was another walk in the park for the unbeaten Waubra on Saturday.
The Roos made light work of Daylesford with a 72-point win in the spa country.
Lukich brothers Geordie and James (five goals) starred for the visitors.
For Daylesford, a handful of players pulled out shortly before the game, including Vincent Townsend who hurt his groin in the warm-up.
Gun onballer Michael Cummings made a successful return from a hamstring injury and was among the team's better players alongside midfielder Cameron Ralph and backman James Evans.
Bulldogs coach Zac Tisdale also rated the efforts of ruckman Sam Winnard and said experienced utility Toby Hughes would be monitored after he suffered a back injury during the afternoon.
DAYLESFORD v. WAUBRA
Waubra 5.4, 6.6, 8.11, 15.14 (104)
Daylesford 1.1, 2.4, 2.7, 4.8 (32)
GOALS, Waubra: James Lukich 5, Austin Murphy 3, Jarred Crabtree 2, Paul Dodds 1, Dylan Payne 1, Caleb McGrath 1, Glen Coleman 1, William Booth 1
Daylesford: Dylan Muscat 1, Cameron Ralph 1, Michael Cummings 1, Eli Kinnell 1
BEST, Waubra: Geordie Lukich, James Lukich, Glen Coleman, William Booth, Austin Murphy, Ryan Head
Daylesford: Cameron Ralph, James Evans, Eli Kinnell, Joel Cummings, Mitchell Steen, Thomas Hunt
Waubra 285.79 36
Newlyn 158.79 24
Hepburn 150.28 24
Buninyong 132.81 24
Skipton 125.15 24
Gordon 124.82 20
Beaufort 120.96 20
Springbank 118.62 20
Learmonth 86.33 20
Creswick 83.89 20
Bungaree 83.36 20
Rokewood Corindhap 76.83 12
Daylesford 74.70 8
Ballan 54.68 8
Carngham Linton 60.62 4
Clunes 56.03 4
Dunnstown 62.26 0