WITH its season on the line, Churchill sealed one of its best victories of the season against fancied Rosedale.
Dark clouds overhead threatened North Gippsland football’s match of the round clash in the opening minutes before the heavens opened.
The Cougars’ five-goal to one first quarter proved the difference at the final siren.
The Cougars won 9.17 (71) to 5.11 (41).
With rain tumbling down, footskills resembled those from the other code of football. Scoring didn’t come easily throughout the contest with Churchill the first to break through.
Drawing forward for the first time, Rosedale scored its first goal through Nick Rutter.
The rain eased as Churchill added its first of four unanswered majors.
Trailing by 23 points at the first change, Rosedale began the second term with a goal in the opening minutes before Churchill got the reply.
Joey Whykes slotted one through before Cougars co-coach Tim Darby was assisted off the field through injury. It didn’t hamper the Cougars’ challenge as they added two majors as their midfielders, led by Whykes and captain Chris Williams, found the conditions to their liking.
The third term was a flurry of points from both sides before a major to Rosedale, the Cougars led by 38 points at the final change.
Rosedale out-scored the Cougars in the final term, but it wasn’t enough as the players were fatigued in the wet and heavy conditions.
TRARALGON-TYERS United took another step toward confirming its hold on a top three berth, marking Justin Palmer’s 200th game with a comprehensive 47-point win over Boisdale-Briagolong.
In wet torrid conditions, scoring was at a premium with TTU scoring the only four goals of the first half with the visitor kept to a mere four behinds.
Led by Palmer and Adam Brady, TTU found the conditions to its liking, booting a further four majors in the second half to record a 8.18 (66) to 2.87 (19) victory.
Adam Helmke worked tirelessly in the heavy conditions for Boisdale-Briagolong.
COWWARR overcame a challenge to defeat Sale City by 40 points to firm their hold on a top five position.
With the Bulldogs leading by a point at quarter-time, the Saints slammed home unanswered goals in the second term. Brendan Smith created plenty of play as the home side took a 16-point lead into the main break.
The third term was an even affair with the sides registering a major each. Sale City defender Tom Bowman swooped on the loose ball, driving play forward as he was instrumental in restricting the Saints’ impact in their forward 50 during a tight 20 minutes of play.
Cowwarr found its poise during the final term, settling in front of goal with Rick Battista and Tim Johnston among the goal kickers as they extended their margin to 40 points to seal their eighth win, 10.14 (74) to 5.4 (34).
Ben Edebohls and Simon Ferguson were solid performers for the Saints, while Jesse Broadbent and Luke Hedger dogged performers for Sale City.
FOUR majors each from Mitch Dowse and Kodie Woodland steered Heyfield over the line against Woodside.
The Kangaroos won 15.12 (102) to 11.7 (73).
The reigning champs hit the ground running, leading by four goals after a solid six major first term. The ladder leaders didn’t halt their run in the second term piling on another four unanswered majors to establish what appeared a match winning 51-point lead.
The tables turned in the second half as the visitors outscored Heyfield, booting nine goals to five.
Five majors came in the third term as the Wildcats worked tirelessly to position themselves back in the contest.
The resurgence was led by Rob Michaelides and Hank Norman.
Kaine Bulmer and Michaelides booted three goals each, but the clock worked against them with the Kangaroos’ first half lead serving them well.
AN even team performance saw Glengarry claim victory over Gormandale on Sunday.
Playing to remain in the hunt of a top five finish, the Magpies had a contest on their hands, trailing by a point at quarter-time before leading by nine at the long break.
Experienced midfielders Brendon Solomon and Luke Hegarty and defender Adam Jaensch rose to the occasion as the Tigers clawed back to within three points at the final change.
But the Tigers struggled to maintain the intensity as Robbie Cahill led from the front in a best-on-
ground performance. The Magpies won 12.13 (85) to 9.7 (61).
Mark Engley and fellow livewire forward Ross McDermott proved a handful for the Tigers’ defence and Ben Nicholson continued his stellar month.