The Rams remain in the hunt for a Murray Football League finals berth after getting over the line by seven points against Congupna on Saturday.August 19, 2014 4:00am
The Deniliquin Rams staved off a desperate Congupna to stay in the race for a Murray Football League finals berth on Saturday.
Congupna kicked five final-quarter goals to cut the hosts’ lead to seven points, sending a massive scare though the Rams camp.
Deniliquin coach Troy Bartlett said there weren’t many highlights from the game.
‘‘We got the result we wanted, however the process needed some work,’’ he said.
‘‘It was probably the first time in six weeks that we expected to win and I think, as a playing group, our mindset was not correct. But I think it will be a good learning curve for us going forward.
‘‘At the end of the day we got a win and, although it was not our best, we got the four points.
‘‘We will do a review tomorrow night and then build strongly for Moama.’’
Despite the win the Rams will face their fourth straight week just outside of finals contention.
They are equal with third-placed Nathalia on 11 wins, but stranded in seventh spot with a lower percentage.
Final score: Deniliquin Rams 9.7 (61) def. Congupna 8.6 (54).
Deniliquin led at every change and was in control for most of the match until the last quarter.
Leading by five points at the first break the Rams drilled four second-quarter goals for a 22-point buffer at half-time.
The Road was held scoreless in the third as the hosts added 1.2 to the scoreboard.
Desperate to cause an upset, Congupna hit hard in the final quarter but were beaten by the siren.
Dashing forward/onballer Ash Morris was the Rams’ best and was also their major goalkicker with three.
Ruckman Anthony Bull, backmen Tom Dowling and Sam Callanan, and big forward Hayden Barker were also among the Rams’ best.
Congupna’s Tate Mifka provided plenty of run through the middle, while Joseph Dwyer stood his ground at centre half-back.
Daniel Collyer and Jess Cosaitis were The Road’s major goal-scorers with two each.
‘‘They play that (defensive game plan) really well and we were able to handle what they gave us,’’ Congupna coach Kevin O’Donoghue said.
‘‘We had a couple of costly turnovers that resulted in goals in the second quarter, but we did really well in stoppages and clearances.’’
O’Donoghue said it was ‘‘the year of nearlys’’ for his side, which sits on 10th spot with three wins.
‘‘I think we’ve lost about six games by less than two goals or so,’’ he said.
In a blow for the Rams, gun midfielder Todd Gallagher was yellow-carded and reported for engaging in rough conduct against Congupna’s Harry Moran in the third quarter.
The Rams will have their fingers crossed when Gallagher fronts the tribunal this week, with a must-win game against Moama in the final round this Saturday.
In the reserves, Ben Nisbet kicked five goals to lead the Rams to a 10.8 (68) to 4.4 (28) victory.
Jono Atley, Hugh Landale and Jake Cavallaro were Deniliquin’s other top players, while Cal Salter kicked two goals.
Hafizullah Mohaqiq was born in Afghanistan, spent periods living in Pakistan and Iran, before arriving in Shepparton two months ago.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The Fairley Leadership Program met in Tatura on Wednesday, exploring ‘Water and our catchment’ at Goulburn Murray Water.
Road authorities have made little progress to fixing Echuca’s most dangerous intersections.
Lockington Vintage Tractor and Stationary Engine Rally is on for the 18th time this weekend and there is something for everyone.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
A visit by Coliban Water to Heathcote last week provided residents with a chance to quiz staff about water and sewer services.
A new book, Men from the River Bends, honours Cobram-Barooga and district soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice after enlisting in World War 1.
Deniliquin bowler Dennis O'Keefe lost 25-19 in his bid for a quarter-final spot in the Victorian Singles Championships this week.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
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