Percentage-boost was the modus operandi for winners in Round 16 of the Gippsland League. The round acted as the first week of a split-round, which saw Sale take to the field, while Maffra had the week off.

THE Magpies kept second spot on the ladder thanks to a huge win over Warragul.

Travelling to Western Park, the visitors were rarely challenged, and ended up winning 25.12 (162) to 8.7 (55).

A seven-goal opening term gave Sale a good platform to build from, which they did for the remaining three quarters.

Needing to win big to stave off the threat of Wonthaggi and Traralgon taking a place in the top three, Sale was able to do just that.

By half-time the margin was out to 54 points, and by three quarter time, bled to 62.

Brad Dessent led the scoring for the winners with six, while Jack Leslie was best-on-ground after nailing five.

Jarrod Freeman celebrated his 100th senior game with three goals. Jack McLaren, Cooper Whitehill, Pat Tainsh, Kane Martin and Harry Ronchi all played well.

Jed Lamb continued his remarkable form in front of goal for Warragul.

The former Carlton player kicked six of the Guls’ eight goals.

Given Warragul’s struggles this season, Lamb’s performances have probably shown just how good you have to be to make it to the top level.

Sam Whibley, Tully Loomes, Sean Masterson, Mitch Nobelius and Brad Hefford were others to contribute for the Guls.

The huge total continued the Magpies scoring spree, which has seen them kick 100-plus points for five consecutive weeks.

While the winter months ordinarily see teams win games kicking between 10 and 12 goals, Sale has gone all-out-attack and kept scoreboard attendants across various Gippsland League grounds very busy.

In keeping with their Magpie moniker, Sale has adapted to various conditions, regardless of what the weather forecast is saying.

As far as Sale is concerned, it has been raining goals every week since Round 12.

The Magpies have kicked 104 majors since then, for a grand total of 104.81 (705), leading to a percentage of 151.54.

TRARALGON said to Sale; ‘Two can play at this game’.

Knowing a huge win was needed in order to potentially set-up a showdown with the Magpies for a place in the top three, the Maroons did just that, wiping Bairnsdale aside by 100 points.

Traralgon showed little mercy at home, and broke away to win 20.14 (134) to 4.10 (34).

The Maroons got up-and-running after the first break, and found their accuracy in front of goal as the match wore on.

The home side kicked 6.1 (37) in the final term, with Brett Eddy ending the match with eight goals.

Eddy’s effort virtually doubled the entire team effort of the Redlegs.

With one eye more than likely turned to the end of the season, Bairnsdale fought the game out as best it could. Nathan Dennison was serviceable, as was Simon Deery, Josh Wykes, Kieran Vickery, Brayden McCarrey and Daniel Eastman.

As well as Eddy, Tye Hourigan, Tom Schneider, Matt Northe, Mark Collison and Luis D’Angelo found plenty of the ball for the Maroons.

Northe kicked four goals, and his emergence as a noted goal-kicker in recent weeks may give Traralgon an extra string to their bow come finals.

With key forwards Jake Best and Dylan Loprese only kicking one goal each at the weekend in a 100-point win, their low returns could actually be seen as a positive now that it is clear the Maroons have multiple avenues to goal.

Traralgon and Sale will now turn to Round 17, where the two sides meet in a fortnight’s time, in a match that could well determine who gets the double-chance.

WONTHAGGI easily accounted for Morwell.

The Power did not give the Tigers a look-in at home, and won 18.12 (120) to 7.9 (51).

Morwell dropped six goals in the opening quarter, and found themselves playing catch-up from there.

Having done most of their hard work early, Wonthaggi was able to run the game out to its liking.

Troy Harley slotted four goals for the victors, and had good support from Ryan Sparkes, Mitch Hayes, Jarryd Blair, Harry Dawson, Toma Huther and Steven Scott.

Brandon Mcauliffe battled hard for Morwell, as did Burkeley Macfarlane, Riley Loprese, Max Linton, Ryan Hearn and Judah Leak.

The result may be an alarming one for the Tigers, with the fear now they could just be making up the numbers if they qualify for finals.

MAFFRA would have been smiling wryly once news of the Morwell/Wonthaggi match came to hand, as the Eagles went back into the top five as its percentage was not affected due to the week off.