NORADJUHA-QUANTONG kept its nose in front of Edenhope-Apsley with an important win over Swifts on Saturday.
The Bombers and Saints are locked in a tight race for fifth place on the ladder and the last finals spot.
With both teams even on points and looking to boost their percentage, the Bombers knew they needed a big win over the Baggies.
They got one, although it was not as big as it could have been.
Noradjuha-Quantong raced out of the blocks and had a 13-goal advantage by quarter-time.
Goalies Olivia McDonald and Sammi Avery continued to shoot well in the second and third terms, helping the Bombers open up a 35-goal lead.
Hayley McDonald’s work in the midcourt and defensive duo Brooke Pay and Yolanda Francis – who restricted Baggies Kaitlyn Ralph, Jade Cleary and Lauren Dempsey to a combined eight goals – were just as important.
The home side finally got off the leash in the final quarter to add 12 goals – more than doubling its score – while the Bombers only added nine more.
Noradjuha-Quantong coach Carmel Officer said she doubted the margin would be big enough to give the team a percentage advantage over Edenhope-Apsley, but was surprised to learn it was enough.
“I was pretty surprised we did get into fifth at the end of the round, but there are a few games to go yet so nothing is decided,” she said.
“We made a few changes in the third quarter, but they got a few goals in the final quarter, which wasn’t good for us.”
Edenhope-Apsley’s match with Rupanyup looked like an easy percentage booster on paper, but turned out differently.
Just like the senior football team, Rupanyup’s A Grade side pushed the Saints for more than three quarters, but could not find a way to finish the side off.
Coach Sarah Domaschenz and young goalie Sacha McDonald combined to lead the team to victory and keep its finals hopes alive. Jodie Hayes and coach Julia Nicholson were Rupanyup’s best.
Harrow-Balmoral and Natimuk United met in a top of the table clash, but little intrigue surrounded the contest after half-time.
The Ewes matched it with the Roos for a quarter before Anna-Grace Close turned it on for Harrow-Balmoral in the second term with 13 individual goals.
The Roos won by a comfortable 20 goals, with coach Ebonie Salter and Sarah Langley named the best.
Natimuk United’s Jo Taylor and Cheryl Sudholz took the honours for their team.
Laharum beat Pimpinio 65-24 to keep its grip on third place, with Maddie Iredell and Polly Hammerton leading the way and Tigers Lisa Ward and Olivia Chenoweth named their team’s best.
Rachel Thomson led Kalkee to a 60-24 victory against Taylors Lake.
Kiewa Lovett and Codie Marra were the Lakers’ best players.