Berwick back in the box seat
Berwick’s premiership defence is right on track after the ultra-efficient Wickers scored a 51-point victory over Cranbourne in Saturday’s SEFNL qualifying final at Holm Park Reserve.
The Wickers had eight scoring shots prior to half time – and converted every single one – at the same time keeping Cranbourne to just three points at the main break.
Things opened up in the second half, but the damage had been done with Stewart Kemperman and his boys booking a second semi-final date with Narre Warren.
The league’s leading goal-kicker, Harry Money, finished the day with six goals for the winners but it was Luke Sheppard who painted the picture for what the afternoon might look like with the opening two majors of the match.
Sheppard would end the day with three, matched by Tim Gunn, while the AFL experience of Travis Tuck, James Magner and Ash Smith proved too hot for the Eagles to handle.
Marc Holt booted three in the second half for the Eagles, while Troy Tharle’s impressive work rate saw him end the day with two.
Cranbourne will now take on the winner of Sunday’s elimination final at Berwick, where Beaconsfield and Officer lock horns in a battle for survival.
Beacy has had the upper hand over the Kangaroos this year, winning by 95 and 53 points, but Officer coach Doug Koop said those results account for nothing this time around.
“I’ve been around footy long enough to know that whatever happens during the season counts for absolutely nothing come finals time,” Koop said.
“We lost to Tooradin last week, but it didn’t really matter one way or the other and it can be a tough place to play footy. They were up and about and we were disappointed to lose, but we did our work at the start of the season and gave ourselves the opportunity to play finals football.”
The Cranbourne premiership coach of 2011 said it was exciting for the club to play finals after a drought that extends all the way back to 2004.
“Everyone has plans. Berwick’s would be to go back to back and ours was to play finals footy and we’ve achieved that part of the plan,” Koop said.
“This whole club has been searching for success, all we’ve done is build the foundations and the players follow the instructions and hopefully that takes us to where we want to be.
“We’ve prepared well, we’ve trained well, the mental preparation seems right, we just have to go out and play with a nothing to lose mentality and restrict them from playing their best footy.”
Koop acknowledges the advantage that the Eagles have in finals experience.
“Of course that is an advantage, and we respect the talent of the opposition before us but we don’t fear them,” he said.
“They’re an offensive team that create a lot of run and carry from the stoppages so restricting them in that key area will be critical to the final outcome. We need to be careful at the stoppages, but we need to focus on us and play a strong brand of footy that will hopefully hurt them on the scoreboard.”
In A Grade netball, Beaconsfield has set up a highly-anticipated second semi-final showdown with reigning premier Tooradin-Dalmore after an eight-goal victory over Narre Warren.
Beacy has been in impressive form of late and will fancy its chances against the Seagulls after an 11-goal victory in round 17.
The Magpies will use their double-chance early, taking on the winner of today’s elimination final between Cranbourne and Doveton in next week’s first semi-final at Pakenham.
In women’s football, Seaford (Div 1), Tyabb (Div 2) and Pearcedale (Div 3) have booked their tickets to next Saturday’s grand finals at Beaconsfield with great wins over Mornington, Seaford and Frankston respectively.
Berwick 5.0 8.0 13.2 16.4.100
Cranbourne 0.2 0.3 5.3 7.7.49
Berwick Goals: H. Money 6, T. Gunn 3, L. Sheppard 3, T. Tuck 2, B. Connelly, T. Thomas. Best: T. Tuck, L. Sheppard, W. Arthurson, H. Money, J. Magner, N. Hillard.
Cranbourne Goals: M. Holt 3, T. Tharle 2, C. Ellison, Z. Roscoe. Best: T. Tharle , K. Dickson, J. Bertrand, A. Bower, A. Vella, C. Ellison.
Narre Warren 3.2 6.2 8.2 10.5.65
Cranbourne 1.4 3.9 5.14 7.14.56
Narre Warren Goals: K. Graham 2, D. Jackson 2, M. Cowan, D. Borninkhof, R. Dempster, B. Harvey, B. Urwin , J. Boccari. Best: H. Johnson, C. Miller, D. Jackson, K. Graham, D. Borninkhof, M. Cronjaeger.
Cranbourne Goals: J. Mills 2, J. Carosella 2, A. Gajanovic 2, J. Stephens. Best: J. Carosella, A. Koe, J. Donadel, H. Bird , A. Burr, A. Fischer.
Narre Warren 3.1 4.1 8.2 11.2.68
Berwick 4.4 7.8 10.12 12.15.87
Narre Warren Goals: A. Williamson 3, F. Stellato 2, M. Butera 2, K. Potter 2, D. Webber, M. Sheppard. Best: J. Flannery, L. Benson, J. Paredes, M. Butera, K. Potter, R. Patterson.
Berwick Goals: J. Andrew 3, J. Lewis 3, T. Bindley 2, K. Wylie 2, K. Tyrrell, D. Morris. Best: T. Bindley, J. Andrew, J. Lewis, J. O'Sullivan, N. Green, J. Bergman.
NETBALL – QUALIFYING FINALS
Beaconsfield 50 defeated Narre Warren 42
Tooradin-Dalmore 34 defeated by Beaconsfield 40
Beaconsfield 46 defeated Tooradin-Dalmore 40
Tooradin-Dalmore 32 v Beaconsfield 27
17 Under Red
Doveton 27 defeated by Berwick 30
17 Under White
Doveton 22 defeated by Beaconsfield 32
15 Under Red
Cranbourne 30 defeated Berwick 29
15 Under White
Narre Warren 19 defeated by Berwick 22
13 Under Red
Pakenham 24 defeated by Beaconsfield 25
13 Under White
Berwick 21 defeated by ROC 25
SEWF – PRELIMINARY FINALS
Seaford 8.9.57 defeated Mornington 2.4.16
Seaford 1.0.6 defeated by Tyabb 12.15.87
Frankston Bombers 3.1.19 defeated by Pearcedale 5.5.35