Barooga is in the top eight on the MNL ladder for the first time this season after a dramatic 50-49 win over Finley at the weekend.
In a match-up that was evenly poised on paper, it was Barooga who got the fast start, something it has rarely been able to do this season.
Barooga led for the majority of the match but the margin never exceeded five or six goals, with Finley able to respond every time it was challenged.
There were some nerves in the Barooga camp as the final quarter went goal for goal, but the Hawks were able to hold firm and weather the Finley storm to win by one goal.
Barooga’s defence lifted enormously after half-time and it helped create a crucial turnover deep in the final term which allowed the Hawks to get a vital three-goal buffer, which proved a bridge too far for Finley to climb.
Goal shooter and co-coach Taylah Hazelman was the star of the show for Barooga, shooting 36 of the team’s 50 goals in a deadly accurate performance.
In the middle of the court, Kayla Eddy was in scintillating form and played her best game of the season in the memorable win.
The Hawks needed to bounce back after an underwhelming performance against Moama the previous week and they did not let that result shatter their confidence, which co-coach Sharni Hazelman was pleased about.
‘‘Coming off last week we were pretty disappointed with the way we played, so we knew we needed to come out firing against Finley,’’ she said.
‘‘We came out and made a good start and everyone applied pressure and did their jobs for the team, which was great.’’
Finally back to full strength after missing players at various stages throughout the season, the Hawks have every chance of making it two wins in a row for the first time this season when they face Tungamah this weekend.
‘‘I don’t think we should underestimate them. It’s their first season in the league, but looking at their scores they’re only just losing, so they’re definitely going to be tough opposition, so we need to be switched on,’’ Hazelman said.
‘‘We need to keep winning if we want to make finals.’’