Lions Claw their way to Victory

COACH Daryn Cresswell described it as “a great character builder” after Palm Beach-Currumbin defied the odds and the weather to beat big improvers Mayne at Salk Oval on Saturday.

By Terry Wilson
Gold Coast Bulletin

Needing to dig deep after a lacklustre first half, the Lions ran roughshod over the Tigers in the final quarter to win by 11.16 (82) to 9.12 (66) after trailing at each break.

PBC trailed by 28 points at quarter-time, by 14 at half-time and by one at the final break.

“It was a great character builder to get over the line when it looked like we weren’t going to,” Cresswell said after the Lions kicked 6.3 to just one point for their victory.

Up to then the Lions had played like they couldn’t handle the tough conditions and a tough opponent.

“The first half was poor, the second half was pleasing,” Cresswell said. “In the second half they responded in a manner I expected them to.”

The Lions managed the fourth-quarter fightback even though they lost Bryce Perry-Bolt (hamstring), Aaron Lohrey (hamstring), Matt Boyd (knee) and Ryan Hards, who was sin-binned for 15 minutes.

“To do that under the circumstances  and to keep Mayne to one behind  was a fantastic effort,” Cresswell said.

Defender Blake Schneider, big utility Jackson Emblem and reinstated youngster Tyler Cornish stood out for the Lions.

Mayne coach Mitch Ferguson was bitterly disappointed to lose a game he and his players thought was theirs for the taking.

“We went there to win, and we had every chance to win  until the start of the last quarter,” he said.

“We had a plan, we stuck to it, but then we lost a couple of guys late with injuries.

“But maybe the players may have gotten ahead of themselves as well.

“I guess Palm Beach were always going to come back and let me say they were very hard to stop once they got going.”

Best for Mayne were Back pocket Bill Stephens, tagger Jeames Gillett (on Jesse Derrick) and Luke Faulkner (three goals).

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AT Bill Godfrey Oval, Surfers Paradise dominated Burleigh to win their derby by 20.4 (124) to 2.7 (19).

Such was the domination of the Demons coach Beau Zorko could not find one negative out of what he termed a complete team effort.

“It was very difficult to find six best players for the paper,” said Zorko.

The only concern for the Dees was a knee knock sustained by captain Jacob Clark, although the club has next weekend off with the bye.

“That’ll be a great opportujnity to freshen up and really launch into the second half of the year,” said Zorko.

Wingman Jim Nancarrow, teenage small forward Noa Corbett (four goals), full-forward Korey Fulton (six goals) and rover Jake Ryan stood out for Surfers, who kept the Bombers goal-less for the first half.

Burleigh’s best were Dean Martin, Sam Brown and Brad Payne.

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COOLANGATTA were well beaten by Wilston-Grange at Hickey Park in Brisbane, going down by 18.20 (128) to 3.6 (24).

Yet coach Neil McKay, disappointed by at a lack of early intensity from the Blues, was pleased with the improvement in that area in the second and third terms.

“In the first quarter quarter we didn’t turn up with the intensity and the players didn’t follow some instructions,” he said.

Those instructions were to stop the Grange at stoppages and cutting off corridor kicks.

“We were too slow in those areas,” McKay said.

.”But in the second and third we improved there.”

McKay had Andrew Haines in the middle, Ali Pinda at centre half-back and Stanis Susave on ball as his best.

It was all rosy for the Gorillas, who snapped a two-match losing streak courtesy of best-on-ground Josh Ubank, the dangerous Dans (Collins and Campbell) and ever-reliable Hugh Campbell.

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THE numbers game at half-time suggested to Maroochydore coach Roger Delaney that his side was well and truly in the game against Sandgate at Fisherman’s Road.

Delaney’s stats indicated the Roos were more than competitive in contested possessions, but their tackling executions were well ahead of the visitors.

Maintain the defensive pressure,, he told his players at the big break, and they could win the game.

And that’s what happened as Maroochydore ran all over the Hawks to win by 10.8 (68) to 3.9 (27) in deplorable conditions.

“The numbers showed we were breaking even in contests, but that meant our strength, tackling, was going to wear them down,” he said.

“The boys kept up contest pressure and ended up going away with it.”

The result was a last term of 6.3 to 0.2  turning a four-point lead to a 41-point winning margin.

The only dampener was a knee injury to captain David Hulsman, shin splints sustained by 17-year-old Matt Allman and news that three other regulars are going home to  Victoria for the Queens Birthday weekend.

Jarrod Raun, Josh McPherson and Jarrod Gale were best for Maroocy while for the Hawks, 18-year-old centre half-back Sam Lubke, captain and midfielder Trent Fuller and Daniel Dai on a half-back flank were the pick.

Player-coach Ben Long said Maroochydore “wanted it” more than his Hawks in the final stanza.

“It was disappointing they way we capitulated, but realistically it was the third quarter that hurt us because we kicked five points when we had chances to put ourselves further ahead,” said Long.

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NEW Springwood coach Tony King had a stark introduction to life with the Pumas when they were thrashed by Noosa at Weyba Road.

Despite the clubhouse side of the field being extremely heavy, Noosa still managed to put on 25.24 (174) to 4.8 (32), which surely served as a reality check for King, who replaced Paul Opbroek as Pumas coach last week.

King, a former Morningside ruckman, was assistant at Springwood when David Lake was head honcho at Lowe Oval in 2005.

Given that the Pumas went n orth missing nine regular seniors, there were some esxcuses, but Noosa were ruthless in the way they disposed of their opposition, opening with a first quarter of 7.4 to nothing.

Ghey had former Broadbeach utility Josh Pierpoint firing across a forward line with seven goals, Tom McKittrick dominated the centre and irrepressible Owen Bailey was also a standout in the mud.

Springwood’s best were Nick Tronc, Bradyn Webb and Matt Preston-Smith.

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