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Wickers’ finals hopes hurt further by Crows

HARD FOUGHT: Jake Hart (Beaufort), Michael Griffin (Creswick) and Brendan Foster (Beaufort) battle for the ball on Saturday. Pictures: Kate Healy.BEAUFORT ‘S five-goals-to-none second half sank Creswick on Saturday.
Nanjing Night Net

A slender three-point margin at half time blew out to a 34-point Crows victory in front of adisbelieving Wickers crowd at Doug Lindsay Reserve.

Creswick matched Beaufort quarter by quarter until half time and the Crows only managed slenderleads because of the home side’sinaccurate kicking.

The Wickers coped well in the muddy conditions for most of the first half, before losing the plot in a scorelessthird term.

The return of ruckman Josh McDermott tothe Graintech Crows’ line-up was evident. It freed Jake Garvey andJarrod Trigg, who had juggled McDermott’s spot the week before.

McDermott was one of four changes to the team before the clash. Branden Sternberg, Brendan

Foster and Mike Cachia replaced Michael Foster, Rohan Brown, James Blackburn and Zach Lockie.

But nothing comes without cost – especially winning.

Skipper Damien Day may be out for the rest ofthe season with a compound fracture to a finger and goal-sneak Jack Duke was hampered with anankle problem.

Duke kicked a spectacular goal off the ground in a rolling wrestling matchduringthebreakaway third term.

Kyle Orr kicked three majors for the Crows and combined with Brendan Foster in aslick play that snagged a great goal in thefirst term.

Foster also got on the scoreboard, along with Levi Cox, Lee Marshall, Joe Mason, Lachie Pfeifer,Aaron Bones and Jake Hart.

Best players for the Crows included Zac Marrow, Steven Lodge and Sternberg.

Joel Berry and Brennan Deppeler were among the bestfor Creswick. Others included Joel Antonio, LukeRobertson and Alex Code.

Beaufort coach Dale Power celebrated the win after a string of close losses to Gordon, Buninyong and Hepburn in recent weeks.

“It’s been tight, frustrating. But we have to play four competitive quarters every week because wedon’t have the scoring capacities to do otherwise. A couple of losses lately could have gone eitherway,” he said.

“That’s footy. We have to roll with the punches.”

Creswick coach Damian Lubeek blamed the loss –which leaves the team 10 points adrift of the Central Highlands Football League top eight with four games to play–on a mental fade-out by his players.

“After the game I told the group I don’t have the answer. The fitness work they’ve been doing isfantastic. The training is really good. It was just above the shoulderstoday. That’s a real disappointingthing,” Lubeek said.

Tim Rieniets

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