Parrots' teamwork key

Colin Sanbrook played a major role for Leongatha in their win over Bairnsdale. file photograph

Colin Sanbrook played a major role for Leongatha in their win over Bairnsdale. file photograph

GIPPSLAND LEAGUE

Leongatha have hit ominous form ahead of finals and a tilt at premiership defence with a mammoth 131-point smashing of Bairnsdale in round 17 on Saturday, 25.18 (168) to 5.7 (37).

Cade Maskell's individual bag of nine goals was more than the Redlegs could manage on home turf, and Parrots coach Paul Carbis said it was a relief to return to form after round 16's loss to Drouin.

"It was pretty much a team effort, which is what we're looking for," Carbis said.

"We didn't have it the week prior against Drouin but our focus going in was getting back to our style and not worrying about the opposition.

"We were pretty keen on having the right team focus yesterday and that's what we did."

Carbis said "only a handful of players" played their roles against the Hawks but was pleased with the input of all 22 on Saturday.

"When only a few put their hand up you're not going to win many games like that," he said.

"But we had 22 guys do their bit from the get-go against Bairnsdale and that was the really pleasing part."

Cade Maskell, who kicked four points before he kicked his first goal in the second term, was served well by fellow forwards Chris Dunne and James Lloyd, who kicked four and three, respectively.

"It was pretty wild conditions, [the] first half wasn't too bad and we put our foot down in the second before the rain and hail came," Carbis said.

Ruckman Ben Willis and defender Colin Sanbrook were again among the best for the Parrots and Carbis said mounting pressure through the midfield helped keep the Redlegs to just five goals.

"The pleasing thing was the way we moved the ball. We were a lot more composed and moved it better and a couple of our supporters said it was really good to watch," he said.

The defending premiers will host Sale in the final round of the home and away season in what could be a preview of the qualifying final next weekend.

Sale v Warragul

Sale did what they needed to do to put away Warragul on Saturday and overcame a slow start to notch a pivotal 10-point win, 8.13 (61) to 8.3 (51).

The Magpies were down to one player on the bench in the final term and coach Shane Fyfe said his side's ability to grind out a win was pleasing.

"The whole four-quarter effort was really good. Conditions were atrocious at stages with the wind howling and that showed in the first half, " Fyfe said.

"It was a case of kick it, went out of bounds and start again, so it was a big battle."

Fyfe said the injuries sustained were "not major" but said he would assess the playing group in "the next couple of days" to see who would take the park against Leongatha this weekend.

Wonthaggi v Moe

Moe have moved a game clear in fourth spot on the Gippsland League senior ladder with just one week to go in the season proper thanks to a 19-point win over Wonthaggi at the weekend, 9.26 (80) to 9.7 (61).

The Lions' inaccurate first quarter was a sign of things to come – but their two goals from 10 scoring shots in trying conditions in the first term was enough to have them 14 points up at the first break.

The lead was short-lived for Moe as Wonthaggi made them pay in the second term with six goals to one to sway the lead 19 points in their favour.

The game see-sawed again in the third quarter and Power – scoreless for the term – watched on as the Lions added four goals and nine behinds to carry a 14-point buffer into the last quarter. Scott and Jayden Van Dyk paired up for two goals each while singles went to five others.

Patrick Ryan did his best for Wonthaggi and bagged five goals.

Maffra v Traralgon

Traralgon must win this weekend's final-round clash with Morwell in order to make finals after they fell to league leaders Maffra on Saturday, 16.15 (111) 5.3 (33).

The Eagles were out to a 10-point lead at the first break and had increased it only marginally to 11 at half-time.

The damage was done in the third quarter for the Maroons when the home side added four goals and kept the visitors to just one to blow the gap out to 31 points at the last change.

Eagle power forward Mitch Bennett was at his dangerous best and bagged seven goals in the win while Kade Renooy scored three and Daniel Bedggood two.

The Maroons will need to notch a convincing final-round win against Morwell this weekend secure a spot in the post-season.

Morwell v Drouin

Drouin have continued on with the form that helped them to an upset win over Leongatha in round 16 with a 49-point victory over Morwell on Saturday, 14.13 (97) to 7.6 (48).

The Tigers were up and about in the opening stages of the game and led by one straight kick at quarter-time, but fell away in the second and conceded six goals while failing to convert any of their own. The Hawks swam with the tide in the third term and added another two goals to lead by a game-winning 39 points at the final change.

Josh Seri was the leading man for Drouin and finished the day with five goals while playing-coach Jordan Kingi kicked three and Tom Barr, Ed Morris and David Olsen two each.

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