AFTER unfurling its 2012 Gippsland League premiership flag, Sale scored a fighting 22-point win over a persistent Traralgon.
It was a good win for the Magpies, who have had a light preparation. For many of their premiership players, it was their first hit-out of the season.
A big crowd witnessed the opening round match with the $4700 in gate takings well up on recent Sale-Traralgon matches.
The Magpies kicked to the wind-favoured hospital end and led by three goals at the first change but the Maroons hit back in the second term, kicking seven goals to four with Jayden Steers doing well in the ruck and setting things up for Josh Jennings, Ash DiCiero and Michael Geary. The Maroons hit the front, but late goals gave the home side a three-point lead at half-time.
It was good to see the way the Magpies lifted when they were challenged. They came home with eight goals to five in the second half to win 16.15 (111) to 13.11 (89).
Once again, the Sale line-up was even with Kane Martin beginning the season where he left off in 2012 with good pace and skills and penetrating kicks which hit targets.
Jake Schuback was quickly back in the action, using his pace and skills to set-up teammates.
Jordan Dessent and Andrew Quirk led a solid defence with Dessent reading the play well to turn defence into attack.
Adam Wallace was good on the wing. This talented young player plays with amazing courage.
Coach Matt Ferguson, as usual, was good in attack, kicking five goals.
Kane Fraser chipping in for two goals, making good position up forward. Mitch Davis, with strong marks, Lachie Todd and Brendon Rathnow also kicked two goals each.