Mount Burr 11.10 (76) d Hatherleigh 8.7 (55)
Mount Burr pushed up into the top four on the Mid South East ladder after a rousing win over Hatherleigh on Saturday.
The Round 10 clash saw a gallant Mount Burr claim an impressive victory, even more so considering it was on the Eagles’ home deck.
The Mozzies were out of the blocks fast against the powerhouse Eagles, with a one-goal lead at the first break.
In a tough contest, Mount Burr methodically added to the scoreboard, while the Eagles were forced to play catch-up football.
The visitors still held a handy 13-point lead at half time but the Eagles were closing in and threatened to come from behind after a solid third term closed the margin to just 10 points at the final break.
However, the Mozzies could smell victory and pushed hard in the final stanza, keen to claim a big scalp.
They made the most of it as the clock wound down for an impressive 21-point victory.
Nathan Muhovics and Dylan Ridley kicked three majors each for the victors, while Jack Gregory and Hamish Smith added two each.
Coach Reece Duncan was rightly pleased with the result, considering Hatherleigh was close to full strength on their own deck.
“It was very pleasing to beat Hatherleigh at Hatherleigh,” he said.
“They came off the back of a good win against Kalangadoo and we were able to get the win.
“It was an important win for us and sets up the back end of the year.”
Heading into the game Duncan said he expected a big challenge but said his side does enjoy to play on the bigger venue.
“We knew it would be a challenge and knew we had to bring our best,” he said.
“We knew if we could bring that pressure on the defensive side and make it tough for them, it would go a long way to help us succeed.
“We were able to bring that pressure from the get-go and set up the game.”
All seemed on track at the main break but the Eagles found something extra in the third term and threatened to take the game away.
However, Duncan said his players lifted and averted any threat.
“The boys were playing well – we had to make some adjustments as you do in football – we made them, adjusted quickly and rolled with it,” he said.
“In the third quarter Joe Ferguson-Lane popped up and kicked a couple of goals and got them rolling but we were able to weather it, get the ball back on our terms and score again.”
The problem Duncan had was the lack of a bench in the final term.
With only a 10-point lead, it looked a tough prospect to hold off the Eagles.
“I said to the boys at three-quarter time, we have given the effort for three quarters, I just want one more run,” Duncan said.
“I told them we don’t stop until that final siren and if we do everything right, we will get the result.
“Going into the last quarter down to no bench, for the boys to run the game out and play the way we did was even more pleasing.”
Duncan said it was one of the best four-quarter performances from his side this season, after previously dropping the intensity after strong starts.
He said he was pleased with how his players stuck to the game plan, took risks and carry it right through the game.
He said one pleasing factor was the willingness for his players to work hard for each other, which ultimately resulted in a victory over a serious premiership contender.
“It was one of our better sides on paper,” Duncan said.
“The question was how good is our best side?
“Is it good enough to be within five goals of Hatherleigh, or three, or how good?
“To get that return was a good way to start the second half of the year.”