Horsham quashed any speculation it is not the team to beat in the upcoming Wimmera Football League finals series, recording a resounding win over Ararat on Saturday.
The Demons opened the match in emphatic fashion, kicking seven majors from 14 scoring opportunities with a strong breeze to lead by 49 points at quarter-time.
Rain in the second term slightly spoiled Ararat’s attack with the wind. The Rats stemmed the flow but the Demons continued to build their lead.
The home side won every quarter to finish in front 17.13 (115) to 5.6 (36).
“We got the pick of the conditions but to be honest I think we played our best footy against the wind,” Horsham coach Deek Roberts said.
“It was the best game we have played in about two months. Our pressure was around the mark we need to have it if we want to go places.
“We were a bit lacklustre against Nhill last week so to have a win like that against a strong side like Ararat says a lot about our players.”
Young Tom Mills booted two of Ararat’s goals as the best on ground for his side.
10 players hit the scoreboard with goals for Horsham, including Brodie Mines and Ryan Kemp with three each. Ben Lakin had two goals as his side’s best player.
“Young Brodie Mines just continues to step up in the absence of other players while Ben Lakin was superb again down back,” Roberts said.
“We didn’t have any passengers which was key.”
Horsham claimed its second consecutive minor premiership with the win, setting up a week off in the first round of finals.
“It is a good luxury to have with a few blokes picking up some niggles here and there. We can play cautiously with them now,” Roberts said.
“We will make sure we don’t back off though because winning form is good form.
The loss proved costly for Ararat, dropping outside the top three with Horsham Saints upsetting the Giants to move into third.
The Rats have a chance to regain their top three spot when they play Nhill next weekend, followed with a guaranteed four points with a bye to finish the regular season.