Sensational Sam - Lloyd reaches `ton'
N Proud moment . . . Sam Lloyd is chaired from the field by Rams teammates Ash Parsons (left) and Rob Resuggan on Saturday. Picture supplied by Tracey Mark at Nathalia Printers.
N Invasion . . . Sam Lloyd is mobbed by fans after kicking his 100th goal.
Lloyd booted six goals to become the fourth ever Deniliquin Ram to kick 100 goals in a season.
His tally stands at 102 majors with one match remaining before finals.
Final score: Deniliquin 19.9 (123) defeated Nathalia 7.7 (49).
The Rams were comfortable winners over the Purples, after leading at every change.
The locals booted 12 goals to Nathalia's two in the first half.
They followed through with seven more in the second half.
Nathalia managed four goals in the final stanza, but they were never going to catch their sixth-placed rivals, who are now cemented in the top-six.
Rams coach Gary Parsons said Lloyd often makes him shake his head in disbelief.
Lloyd kicked 36 goals in 20 games playing mainly as a midfielder last season, but was this year shifted to cover injured trio Ben Seignior, Leigh Marshall and Paul Scoullar.
"He (Lloyd) kicks a couple of goals every week that make you think, `how did he do that?'.
"He reminds me a lot of (Collingwood forward Paul) Medhurst, just a small forward that's hard to match-up on.
"You match him on a small guy and he can sit on their shoulders and you match him up on a big guy and he out-runs them."
Lloyd joins Greg Collins (101 goals in 1972), Trevor Sutton (121 in 1981 and 249 in 1982) and Paul O'Bree (114 in 1992) as other Rams to notch goalkicking centuries.
Lloyd has kicked 43 per cent of Deniliquin's 238 goals this season and his tally of 102 includes hauls of 12 against Echuca United, 11 against Congupna and 10 against Rumbalara.
"The whole footy club is pretty proud. He was swamped by our thirds and fourths kids and is held in pretty good regard around the place," Parsons said.
"He's a real knockabout young bloke that's a local product. That makes it even more special.
"You get an outsider that comes in and kicks 100, well that's fine, but if you get a young kid that's locally born and bred it just adds a bit of speciality to it."
N Young gun . . . Sam Lloyd salutes to the crowd after slotting his 100th goal for the season.
Lloyd moved to Melbourne this year to work as a builder and study a construction management course.
He knocked back an offer to train with Victorian Football League club Werribee.
"I was offered two weeks before the season started and I hadn't moved to Melbourne and it was bad timing really," Lloyd said.
"I haven't thought about (joining a VFL club) next year.
"I want to do the best we can this year.
"I said to the boys before the game `I have four to get my 100, but the most important thing is we play good footy and take something into the finals'."
Marshall slotted three goals for Deni on Saturday, while Ash Morris and Tim Holobowski kicked two apiece.
Sean Moodie, Nick Howe, Rob Resuggan, Ed McCulloch, Geoff McCallum and Oli Maddison were best for the Rams.
Deniliquin's reserves beat Nathalia by 27 points.
Final score: Deniliquin Rams 12.1 (73) def. Nathalia 7.4 (46).
The home side led by three goals at half time, but Deni fought back to snatch a good win.
Trent McNamara middled four for Deni, while Brad Robson, David Landini and Mark Panton bagged two each.
Brad Haines, McNamara, Irish recruit Michael Feeney, Panton, Tom Edwards and Harvey McKinnon were Deni's better players.