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By PEPPE CAVALIERI - Division 1 Seniors
A WEEK removed from seemingly shutting the gate on Altona’s finals chances with a stirring win against Hoppers Crossing, Werribee Districts has left the door slightly ajar for the Vikings.
The Tigers took on Altona on Saturday in a match that would either completely set the top five in stone, or offer the Vikings hope of another late charge.
And with Altona prevailing comfortably by 55-points, it was the latter that ensued.
The 17.9. (111) to 8.8. (56) triumph sees the sixth-placed Vikings close the gap on the fifth-placed Tigers to just two matches – while Altona holds a far superior percentage.
The Vikings were well served by Daniel O’Leary and Steve Kennedy, while Josh MacDonald booted five goals.
Werribee Districts lacked firepower up front with Andrew Panayi called up to Footscray in the VFL, but supply to the forward line was lacking regardless.
The Tigers-Vikings clash was one that could have gone either way, so while Altona’s victory didn’t come as a surprise, it was a round that otherwise went to script.
Deer Park ripped Wyndhamvale apart by 162-points to tighten its grasp on top spot.
James Condos kicked 13 goals and Jase Perkins five, while Jake McKenzie was named best-on-ground and 100-gamer Chris Stewart put in a strong performance.
Spotswood kept Albion goalless in the first three quarters, and finished with a 69-point win.
Mitch McLean kicked six goals for the Woodsmen, and while the likes of Pat Savage, Todd Finco and Josh Bench were good for the Cats, their finals hopes have now been essentially put to bed.
Hoppers Crossing bounced back from a poor showing against Werribee Districts by casting aside Caroline Springs on Saturday, winning by 87-points.
Jordan Mead continues to build ahead of finals – his 10 goals a signature performance on a dominant day for the Warriors.
Meanwhile Sunshine stayed in third place on the ladder with another solid win against St Albans.
Thirty-six scoring shots to 16 proved too much for the Saints, as the Roos ran out 55-point winners.
Jake Allen and Aaron Searle kicked three goals each as Sunshine spread the load nicely.
Adem Asani kicked three goals for St Albans, while Tim Jenkins was the best in a losing side with two goals.
By CONNOR PAIN - Division 1 Reserves
SHAUN Collis’ five goals helped Altona secure a hard fought victory over the Werribee Districts, 15.5(95) to 10.8(68).
Although the Vikings were the better side over the four quarters, Werribee looked threatening during periods.
The Tigers booted three quick goals late in the second quarter, but still trailed by 18-points going into half-time.
Altona kicked six goals to four in the second half, doing enough to earn their 11th win of the year. The Vikings sit just over four percentage points behind second-placed Hoppers Crossing. A win against Albion this week could see Altona jump the Warriors on the ladder.
Werribee will look to bounce back from the 27-point loss in Round 13 when they host Caroline Springs.
Three goals in the fourth quarter helped Spotswood come from behind against Albion and earn its fourth win of the year, running out eight-point victors.
Both sides held leads at different quarter breaks, Albion led at quarter time before the Woodsmen took control and went ahead at half-time.
The Cats regained the lead in the third quarter and looked to be in control heading into the fourth.
The ninth-placed Cats couldn’t stay in front as Spotswood came home strongly, winning 8.4. (52) to 6.8. (44).
The Woodsmen can earn their fifth win of the season, when they take on Wyndhamvale this Saturday.
Sunshine maintained its place on top of the ladder with a comprehensive 75-point win against St. Albans.
The Kangaroos were in control all day, holding the Saints to just one goal in the first half.
Darren Haby was voted best on ground and kicked a game-high four goals for Sunshine.
The final score was 16.9. (105) to 4.6. (30).
The Kangaroos sit one and a half games ahead of the chasing pack on the ladder on 50 competition points.
The Roos will face Hoppers Crossing this week in what could be the game of the season, while St. Albans will look to get away from the bottom of the ladder when they face Deer Park.
Hoppers Crossing cruised past Caroline Springs to earn its 11th win of the year. The 70-point win almost guarantees the Warriors a top four finish for the third straight season.
Deer Park routed Wyndhamvale to the tune of 144-points as the Lions. The Falcons were held scoreless in the first half during the 23.14(152) to 1.2(8) mauling.