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BAIRNSDALE broke a long losing streak at Sale when it defeated the Magpies 14.13 (97) to 10.6 (66) in Saturday’s Gippsland League football match.
It was the Redlegs’ first win at Sale since 1994.
Now with three wins, Bairnsdale moves into sixth place on the ladder, just behind Moe and Warragul on percentage.
Sale had to change its selected team when Michael Todd, who was injured at Leongatha, and Kane Martin, who was injured at work on Friday, had to be replaced. Sale’s injury list has now increased to 11.
Thirds players Mitch Thacker, Isaac Love, and Jack McLinden all played their first senior matches, and coach Shane Fyfe commended his players for their commitment.
Ten of the players are 20-years-old or younger.
Fyfe said the Magpies kept trying but had a bit of work to do on their skill errors, although it was encouraging their best quarter was the final term, when Sale kicked 5.2 to three goals with the wind.
It was always going to be tough for Sale with Todd and Martin out, as they have been averaging 50 possessions between them, and that left the door open for the Redlegs’ midfield.
Former Magpie Tom Hams kicked two goals for the visitors, and set-up several more for his teammates.
John McIntyre, who has been a welcome return for the Magpies, was their best, as a goal kicker capable of playing in most positions, and worked hard in contests.
John Gooch was good again up forward, with two goals, and Andrew Quirk finished with three goals on a day when goals were hard to score.
Thacker worked hard for possessions and was not out of his depth at this level.
Justin Mitrevski, Jayden Allison and Jackson Glenane worked hard around the packs and tried to make up for the loss of their injured players.
Bairnsdale had 10 goal kickers, with their best players Hams, who played his usual consistent game, Wes Russel, Cameron McPhan, and Max Rowe.