By Lachlan Onions
Round 16 of Mid South Eastern football sets itself up to be a round of rather one-sided contests but there is still the possibility of upsets, as was proven last week, when Glencoe defeated Hatherleigh away from home.
With just three rounds to play until finals, those in the top four cannot afford to slip-up, while Robe, who has been in pursuit for the last month, will need to pull a rabbit out of the hat to give itself a chance of finals football.
Kongorong v Hatherleigh
Hatherleigh will look to bounce back from its shock-loss in Round 15, with a strong performance against Kongorong on Saturday.
Despite, their defeat last week, the Eagles will still be confident they can claim an important four points as Port MacDonnell will look to capitalise on any errors from the Eagles.
Back in Round 7, Hatherleigh claimed a dominant 128-point win over Kongorong.
The Eagles flew out of the blocks and led by 56 points after just one quarter.
Jordan Galpin was plyer of the match and Jack Skeer kicked seven goals for the game.
The Hawks have been on an impressive run over the last month and will expect to put in a better performance than last time they played the Eagles.
The home side have won two of their last three games and put up a strong fight in their loss to Robe in Round 14.
Aaron Lightbody will be a crucial player for Kongorong, as his consistency has been key to his side, who have racked up four wins for the season.
Hatherleigh will look to cause all sorts of problems for the Kongorong defence, with Brad Mitchell, Jake Dowdy and Sam Telfer all dangerous inside 50.
Mitchell leads the goalkickers for the Eagles this season, with 35 majors for the season.
Hatherleigh will prove too strong for Kongorong and should comfortably win this match but Kongorong will out up a far better fight than they did in Round 7.
Mount Burr v Nangwarry
Mount Burr returns home for the first time since June on Saturday.
The Mozzies will be refreshed and ready to make their final push for finals after a bye last week.
Mount Burr has impressed in the second half of this season, when it went on a seven-game winning streak.
The Mozzies’ last game was a loss to Kalangadoo and they will be eager to return to from when they host Nangwarry.
When these two sides last met, Mount Burr won by 87 points.
Josh Fiebig was player of the match and Hamish Smith kicked five goals for the game.
Smith has been dominant this season and the Saints’ defenders will need to shut him down the best they can, as he has kicked 44 majors for the season.
Luke Thomson will be a key player for Nangwarry as well as Joel Virtanen and Andrew Hyland.
Hyland has kicked the second-most goals for the season with 51.
The Saints head into the game off the back of a difficult loss to Kalangadoo, where they lost by 99 points at home.
Mount Burr is currently fourth on the ladder and will want to win to keep itself comfortably ahead of Robe and begin its run towards finals football.
The Mozzies will claim a relatively easy victory on their home deck.
Port MacDonnell v Tantanoola
The Tigers will make a trip to the Bay on Saturday and will hope they can put in a better performance than last week.
In a game which was expected to be a close contest, Tantanoola was comprehensively defeated at home by Kongorong, while Port MacDonnell will be full of confidence as it is now almost certain to make finals, thanks to an important win over Robe in Round 14.
When these two sides met earlier this season, the Demons took the honours with a 65-point win.
The Tigers were restricted to just one goal for the first half and faced an uphill battle for the rest of the game.
Kyall McClean was best on ground for the Demons, while Kev Thomson led the goalkickers with five for the game.
Thomson and Tim Sullivan will be key players for Port MacDonnell and Tantanoola will need to restrict their impact the best it can.
Thomson has kicked 33 majors this season, while Sullivan has been a consistent contributor with 26 for the season.
Jack Dawe has been a key player for Tantanoola and will be one to watch.
The Demons have won nine games this season and will be confident they can claim another win on Saturday.
The Tigers have lost their last eight matches and have a difficult run for the rest of the season.
Port MacDonnell will prove to strong at home and should easily claim the win on Saturday.
Kalangadoo v Robe
In the match of the round, Kalagadoo will look to seal top spot on the ladder with a win over Robe.
The Roosters will need to defeat the Magpies if they are to have any chance of making finals.
In the Round 7 clash, Kalangadoo won at the seaside by 134 points.
Sam and Tye McManus were the two best players for the Magpies and have been some of the most consistent performers in the league this season.
Michael Krieger led the goalkickers in the game at Robe with six.
Krieger has been in unstoppable form this year with 62 majors for the year and is on course to kick the most goals in the league.
Kalangadoo will welcome back Pat Davies, who was absent from the Magpies side who defeated Nangwarry last weekend, as he was a part of the SA Country side which defeated WA Country at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday.
Tom Wachtel will be a key player in the ruck for Robe and has been named amongst the best players for his side the most, while Tom Miller will need to put in a strong performance if the Roosters are to have any chance on Saturday.
The Magpies’ talent is near endless with unrivalled squad depth and they should comfortably claim the win this weekend.