A look ahead at Round 13 in Heidelberg Golf Club Division 3.
Last week’s nail-biter between Epping and St Mary’s had huge ramifications for the top end of the ladder ahead of Round 13 action of Heidelberg Golf Club Division 3.
St Mary’s won a thriller by a solitary point over Epping at Epping Recreation Reserve. The win puts the Burra third on the ladder – two games plus percentage ahead of the Blues and also keeps them within reach with the top-two teams.
The win, which was secured by a late goal to Leigh Sullivan, was sweet revenge for St Mary’s after losing a series of one-kick matches against Epping in recent times.
Epping remains in fourth spot on the ladder but only leads Heidelberg West and Kilmore on percentage. Given that Epping has an easier run home than the other two finals chances, a win would have almost slammed the door shut on the finals hopes of those teams.
Heidelberg West improved its record to 6-5 with a 13-point win at Laurimar. The Hawks were well served by the usual suspects, along with Adem Samsa, who played on the ball in his return from injury. Kyl Ewart managed four goals despite being double-teamed at times.
“The future is our own hands – if we keep winning, we play finals,” Heidelberg West coach Gary Cutler said.
Jackson Lewis continued his recent good form for the Power, who have gradually improved as the season has gone.
Kilmore became the third team on six wins – along with Epping and Heidelberg West – with a 28-point triumph over Mernda at Waterview Recreation Reserve.
In a low-scoring game, the Blues gained the decisive break with the wind in the third term and then withstood a charge from the Demons to pull away for a good victory.
The result made it back-to-back wins on the road for the Blues, separated by a Round 11 home loss to Epping. Daniel Mathew played his second game for the season and excelled in the back pocket – giving his team plenty of drive.
“It was a scrappy game of footy,” Kilmore coach Nathan Phillips said. “But the boys dug deep and found a way to win and keep our finals hopes alive”.
The loss extends Mernda’s losing run to nine after beginning the year with consecutive wins. The Demons now have the bye.
Reservoir came off the bye to host South Morang. The Lions were off target early but they eventually pulled away for a 103-point win.
Alex Colaidis returned his best figures for the year with six majors for South Morang. David McGregor booted three for the Mustangs.
The win drew the Lions level with ladder-leader Banyule, with the Bears remaining on top with a small percentage buffer.
Top spot will be up for grabs in Round 13 action when South Morang tussles with Banyule at Mill Park Lakes Reserve.
The winner will all but wrap up the double chance and would be considered premiership favourite.
The loser could find itself hanging on to second spot by percentage only if St Mary’s wins its match, albeit having played one fewer game than the Burra.
The earlier clash at R.J. Brockwell Oval produced a comfortable 24-point win for Banyule – despite conceding the first four goals to the Lions. But South Morang’s form seems to have improved since the Round 5 encounter and this is expected to be a tight affair.
Epping hosts Laurimar at Epping Recreation Reserve and would be favoured to sure up fourth spot on the table. Their Round 4 meeting resulted in a 109-point win by the Blues.
While the Power has improved since, it is hard to make a case for the fledgling club to win in their first trip to Epping, particularly with so much at stake for the Blues.
Reservoir travels to Heidelberg Park to play Heidelberg West as it continues its search for its first win for the year. This is a must-win game for the Hawks as they aim for the finals.
Heidelberg West has the bye next week and then rounds out the season with the difficult assignment of games against each of the current top-four sides.
St Mary’s travels to play Kilmore at J.J. Clancy Reserve in a vital game for both teams.
The Blues – with a significantly inferior percentage to Epping and Heidelberg West in the hunt for fourth – need to win to keep within striking distance of finals football in their second win in the NFL.
However the Burra should be favoured to win this and draw level with the loser of the top of the table clash. The last time these teams met at this venue yielded a 29-point win to St Mary’s in the Blues’ debut game in the league.