By Jeremy Richards
A four-goal haul from Rosedale full-forward Brandon McDonald has helped steer his team to victory in round one of the AGL Loy Yang North Gippsland Football Netball League.
In a repeat of last year’s grand final result, Rosedale easily accounted for Heyfield 13.11 (89) to 7.7 (49).
Prior to the opening bounce,, the 2015 grand final flag was unfurled and after the official formalities, it was down to business.
The Kangaroos jumped from the blocks early, acing a six-pointer within the first 30 seconds.
But as it happened, this was to be the only time they would lead during game.
When Alex Whitehill kicked truly at the 15-minute mark, followed by McDonald one minute later, the momentum swung back Rosedale’s way.
Fierce tackling and good use of the ball paid off for the Blues, and when Jack Tatterson snapped truly at the 20-minute mark, the signs were ominous.
Late goals to Frazar Brouns and MacDonald ensured Rosedale went into the quarter-time huddle with a 23-point lead.
It was a different story at the start of the second quarter as Heyfield mounted a perfect challenge. They held Rosedale up well in the stoppages and started to play possession football which halted the home side’s run.
When Stubbe slotted truly at the 10-minute mark, Heyfield was back within three kicks. However, when Jesse Jackway wasted a valuable opportunity at the 14-minute mark and the Blues capitalised at the other end in a 12 point play, Heyfield’s momentum was shut down.
Jeremy Reid was solid in defence for Rosedale and used his stature to great effect, repelling Heyfield’s forward advances and helping to steer the Blues to a 22point lead at the main break.
The third quarter was an arm wrestle and the westerly breeze blowing across the ground from wing to wing favoured neither side.
However, Rosedale did apply scoreboard pressure and goals to MacDonald and Jake Suter midway through the quarter kept the Blues in front by a comfortable margin.
The Kangaroos started the final quarter well again holding up the Blues in the stoppages and playing the game on their own terms.
Possession football from Heyfield stopped the Blues’ forward momentum and when James Beha kicked his third goal at the 14-minute mark, the visitors were within three straight kicks.
With plenty of time on the clock, the Kangaroos were in with a fighting chance.
But their hopes were soon dashed when MacDonald answered with the quick reply, and from that point on, the cracks began to show.
The fat lady warmed up her tonsils and when Brouns snapped truly on the run extending the margin out to 30 points there was little hope of a Kangaroos revival.
At the 24-minute mark, Matthew Bond put the icing on the cake for the Blues, sealing a 40-point victory and demonstrating why these boys indeed deserve their reigning premiers mantle.
Rosedale coach Sam Bristow said he was pleased with the way the Blues put their bodies on the line, their running game, and the way they controlled the centre corridor, and was enjoying his first season at the helm.
“The boys used the ball really well, especially when they link up with the mid-field,” Bristow said.
“I love the challenge of the new role (and) I really want our club to see success this year.”
Elsewhere, four goals from Dean Degroot led Churchill to a 29-point win against TTU, Cowwarr held on to beat a gallant Glengarry by eight points and Sale City accounted for Gormandale by 145 points.
Categorised in: Finals
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