By David Nagel
Bunyip continues to emerge as a genuine threat for this year’s West Gippsland A Grade title after the Bulldogs made light work of perennial powerhouse Tooradin-Dalmore on Saturday.
The Bulldogs’ 57-34 victory completes a dominant home-and-away season against the reigning champions, with a 69-35 triumph in round eight catching everyone by surprise.
The Doggies brought in a ruthless approach to this top- three encounter and basically had the four points locked away at quarter time.
Bunyip burst out of the blocks, leading 18-9 at the first break with every cog in its energetic machine flowing in perfect harmony.
Sam Walker (GK) and Olivia Hunt (GD) continue to take space away from their opponents in defence, while Ally Johnson (WD) and Ebony Mumford (C) worked magnificently on transition.
And with Aimee Wright (WA) feeding the likes of Jasmin Mackie (GS) and Kyra Esler (GA) the Bulldogs – when on song – are an almost impossible team to stop.
Mackie scored 11 first-quarter goals, and Esler seven, before the pair rammed home 14 and two respectively in the second term.
The Bulldogs led 34-18 at half time and cruised home to victory.
Tooradin has now encountered the bitter taste of heavy defeat for the second week running and will need to draw on every sinew of its incredible fighting spirit if it is to defend its crown.
The quality is still there, with Alex Maher (GS) and Kayla Bratic (GA) capable of scoring heavily, while Chloe Crouch (WA), Ebony Dolan (GD), Jess Maher (GK) and Stacey Sawyer (C) are players no-one should ever write off.
The Seagulls now sit fourth, but level on points with second-placed Bunyip and Dalyston in third.
Dalyston was pushed to its limits by Phillip Island on Saturday, eventually prevailing by four goals in a 40-36 thriller.
The Magpies unleashed a new weapon on the weekend with Hannah Grenville making her A Grade debut, further strengthening an already strong unit.
The Magpies should win their next two, against Cora Lynn and Garfield, setting up a huge final-round clash with Bunyip that will decide who finishes top-two and gains a coveted double-chance.
Gemma Thomas, Alana McRae, Chloe Bramley and Grace McRae….they’re names to keep an eye on for Bunyip come finals time.
Lily Mewett, Christie Edwards and Anthea Bennett gave their all for Phillip Island.
Nar Nar Goon enjoyed its early start against Warragul Industrials on the weekend, putting together its highest score of the season in a 79-25 whitewash at Spencer Street.
The Goon girls were keen to get this one done and dusted, and leave time to ‘frock-up’ for the massive Ladies Day event that kicked off early afternoon.
Regular faces like Hollie Keysers, Chantelle Dale, Karly Meinecke and Ash Coombes have now driven the Goon to just one game away from second spot.
The Goon faces Korumburra-Bena this week, before the toughest of finishes against Tooradin and Inverloch.
The Dusties will be looking for their first win since round nine, when they head to bottom-placed Kooweerup.
And Korumburra-Bena has also accumulated its highest score for the season with a 63-18 victory over Kooweerup on Saturday.
The Giants currently sit eighth, but appear the only team that can knock Phillip Island out of sixth place…with the Bulldogs facing a tough fortnight ahead with Tooradin and Bunyip on the horizon.
If the Giants can defeat Nar Nar Goon this week, they then have a bye, with the last spot in this year’s final series then going on the line against Phillip Island Bulldogs in round 18.
Ladder-leading Inverloch-Kongwak had the bye on the weekend…and this week hosts Garfield.
WGFNC RESULTS – ROUND 15
A GRADE: Cora Lynn v Garfield, Dalyston 40 v Phillip Island 36, Kilcunda-Bass 0 v Inverloch-Kongwak 20, Kooweerup 18 v Korumburra-Bena 63, Nar Nar Goon 79 v Warragul Industrials 25, Tooradin-Dalmore 34 v Bunyip 57.
B GRADE: Cora Lynn v Garfield, Dalyston 52 v Phillip Island 59, Kilcunda-Bass 46 v Inverloch-Kongwak 46, Kooweerup 40 v Korumburra-Bena 26, Nar Nar Goon 106 v Warragul Industrials 24, Tooradin-Dalmore 60 v Bunyip 54.
C GRADE: Cora Lynn v Garfield, Dalyston 38 v Phillip Island 24, Kilcunda-Bass 11 v Inverloch-Kongwak 50, Kooweerup 22 v Korumburra-Bena 24, Nar Nar Goon 49 v Warragul Industrials 20, Tooradin-Dalmore 18 v Bunyip 52.
D GRADE: Cora Lynn 33 v Garfield 24, Dalyston 43 v Phillip Island 22, Kilcunda-Bass 34 v Inverloch-Kongwak 38, Tooradin-Dalmore 27 v Bunyip 35.
17 UNDER: Cora Lynn 33 v Garfield 10, Dalyston 38 v Phillip Island 37, Kilcunda-Bass 28 v Inverloch-Kongwak 48, Kooweerup 22 v Korumburra-Bena 26, Nar Nar Goon 45 v Warragul Industrials 17, Tooradin-Dalmore 45 v Bunyip 23.
15 UNDER: Cora Lynn v Garfield, Dalyston 14 v Phillip Island 38, Kilcunda-Bass 12 v Inverloch-Kongwak 37, Kooweerup 13 v Korumburra-Bena 36, Nar Nar Goon 42 v Warragul Industrials 26, Tooradin-Dalmore 17 v Bunyip 29.
13 UNDER: Cora Lynn 35 v Garfield 14, Dalyston 2 v Phillip Island 49, Kilcunda-Bass 11 v Inverloch-Kongwak 32, Kooweerup 31 v Korumburra-Bena 12, Nar Nar Goon 37 v Warragul Industrials 18, Tooradin-Dalmore 34 v Bunyip 6.
11 UNDER: Cora Lynn 12 v Garfield 5, Dalyston 18 v Phillip Island 9, Kilcunda-Bass 1 v Inverloch-Kongwak 31, Tooradin-Dalmore 19 v Bunyip 6.