In a battle between eighth and ninth, Cobram has walked away with a strong win despite some unsteadiness in front of the goal posts.
Despite squandering a few chances in the first term, the Tigers held on to take the 34-point win and jump a spot into seventh place on the Murray Football League ladder.
Cobram kicked nine points in the first quarter and another nine in the second quarter to lead by four points at the main break, 3.18(36) to Tongala’s 5.2(32).
The Tigers steadied the ship in the second half, booting five majors in the third quarter and another three in the final to finish 11.24(90) to 10.4(66).
Co-coach Josh Noonan said his side knew they’d lost a number of opportunities to significantly extend their lead during the match, but the players were happy to walk away with the win.
‘‘There was an issue with the scoring shots, with 18 in the first half and that was where we probably had an opportunity to really extend our lead,’’ he said.
But after a defeat at the hands of Mulwala the previous week, the game on Saturday showed plenty of positives, Noonan said.
‘‘The team is really coming together now, especially now we’ve had a few games together and we’re really starting to work well together.’’
Once again Mitch Richmann was the major contributor with three majors, with Ben Ryan also chipping in two.
Influential for the Tigers were Tyron Baden, Sam Gemmill, co-coach Tim Garlick, Dan Fitzpatrick, Richmann and Nick Clydesdale.
Noonan knows it’s a tough road ahead as Cobram prepares to travel to take on the Purples, the only undefeated side remaining in the competition.
After the disappointing run in front of goals, Noonan said the team would be working on its effectiveness and pulling together ahead of the challenge on Saturday.
‘‘We know it’s going to be a really big challenge, Nathalia are a very strong side and they’ve been very strong for a while now,’’ he said.
Barooga loses first match for the season
A tactical masterclass from Numurkah co-coaches Chris O’Dwyer and Lucas White helped their side pip Barooga by just two points on Saturday.
On two separate occasions at the Numurkah Showgrounds the Blues’ coaching staff swapped magnets with outstanding results to quell the Hawks’ firepower and turn the match.
After Barooga co-coach Tyrone Downie roared out of the blocks with the first four goals of the game, the McKeowns were shuffled and Luke was sent back in place of captain Beau.
Midfield bull Ricky Thomson was also integral in a 26-point lead for the Hawks at the first change, but once new Blue Brad Vassal was sent to him his influence was curtailed.
Barooga did not go down without a tactical fight of its own though, with full-back Tim Brooks thrown forward late to snag a goal and bring the margin to its final resting place of two points.
‘‘Both sides threw things around and did what they had to do to try and win,’’ Downie said.
‘‘We just thought we needed more up forward at the end there and he was lucky enough to snag one.’’
A wasteful third term of 2.4 for the Hawks contributed to their first defeat for the year, but Downie thought the loss could not be put down to one period of the game.
‘‘We started well and were on top, but we allowed them back into it and they outplayed us,’’ he said.
‘‘We definitely missed a few opportunities throughout the game, not just in that part.’’
The Hawks will take out their collective frustration on Rumbalara at home before reassessing during the interleague bye.
‘‘We have plenty of work to do, there’s still improvement there,’’ Downie said.
‘‘We’ll go back to the training track and hopefully put in a good performance next week.’’
—with Tyler Maher