Horsham Saints defeat Southern Mallee Giants | Wimmera Football League 2018

THE Horsham Saints moved into third position on the ladder after the side managed to overcome the Southern Mallee Giants for the second time this season.

After kicking the only two goals in the first half the Saints ground out the win in difficult conditions to prevail 6.7 (43) to 4.9 (33).

It was the first time the home side had lost at Beulah since round 16 of the 2015 Mallee Football League season.

Saints coach Luke Fisher was rapt with the pressure his side applied in order to claim  the four points.

“Coming in the expectation was that they were going to be a fair bit improved since time,” he said.

“They certainly tried a different style and had some positional changes but we brought the pressure.

“I thought we were able to force turnovers in order to control most of the game.”

Just at it had a done a week prior the Giants were able to create scoring opportunities in the opening quarter without managing the desired result.

A combination of the high pressure applied by the Saints and the slippery conditions brought about by sporadic showers saw the side manage just four behinds in the first quarter.

Brayden Helyar managed to score the only goal prior to the first break despite the Saints kicking into a slight breeze to help his side lead by three points.

As the second quarter continued the temperature at the ground dropped further while players from each side slogged it out.

Scoring opportunities came at a premium as the ball bounced the between the 50 metre arcs on the wide expanses of the Beulah ground. 

Jacob O’Beirne added a second goal for the Saints five minutes into the term while the Giants missed further opportunities.

After trailing by nine points at the main break the home team came out hungry.

Quick goals to Zac Robins and Josh Webster midway through the third saw the side take the lead for the first time in the match before Gage Wright kicked truly for the Saints at the 20-minute mark.

A second Brayden Helyar goal allowed the Saints to carry an eight-point lead into the final term as conditions blackened overhead.

Both coaches reiterated to their huddles how important the first goal of the fourth would be and it fell the way of the Gaints courtesy of a Haydn Drew freekick at the top of the goal square.

For five tense minutes the margin was less than a kick before Ollie Timms became an unlikely goal scoring hero from the boundary.

As the ball sailed through his teammates rushed to him while Saints supporters positioned behind his kick erupted.

Timms converted again 10 minutes later to cap off a strong individual quarter and Robins kicked a final consolation goal for the Giants in the closing minutes.

“Our style of play was just for everyone to contribute and for everyone to apply that pressure,” Fisher said.

“If everyone did their role then we thought we would win.

“We let the Giants in for a little bit in that third quarter but we weathered storm and got back on top by pressuring them.”