Noradjuha-Quantong 84 d Natimuk United 62
NORADJUHA-QUANTONG supporters could have been forgiven for groaning when the quarter-time siren sounded in Saturday’s clash with Natimuk United.
Already in the midst of a disappointing season, the Bombers looked set for more pain when they trailed their neighbour by 21 points at quarter-time.
The team lost its first meeting with the Rams by 19 points, but this time was different.
Coach Jarred Combe returned for his first game in two-and-a half months after sitting out with a badly broken arm, and said his team kept the faith after a poor start.
The Bombers had the better of the second quarter without making inroads on the scoreboard, before a dominant third term delivered them a 10-point lead.
The visitors locked the ball in their forward half, kicking 4.6 and holding Natimuk United to a single behind.
They held their nerve in the final term and shut the door on the Rams to win by 22 points.
Heath Watson played a huge game across half-forward, finishing with a game-high five goals, and young Tom Ridsdale continued to impress.
“We stayed positive at quarter time and I just said we had to realise we weren’t implementing our game plan out on the ground and trying to be a bit fancy,” Combe said.
“We weren’t really playing to the wet conditions, but after quarter time we played the type of footy we wanted to play all game.”
John Cozens and Josh Friend played unheralded roles in the Rams’ backline but could not stop the bleeding for their team.
Natimuk United coach Tim Friend kicked four goals in his return from a hamstring injury but said he had played below his best.
He said his team needed to regain its mental toughness.
“We were looking good at quarter time but after that, I don’t know what happened,” he said.
“We’ve got no answers at the moment and we’re struggling to find where we’re going wrong.”
Friend said if his team produced a similar effort at the weekend it would lose to Rupanyup.