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ROUND 13 REVIEW
Bentleigh 7.7 (49) def by St Kilda 11.16 (82)
St Kilda City have climbed up into third spot following a crushing 33-point win over Bentleigh at Arthur Street.
The Saints were the better side from the outset but missed their opportunity to put the Demons to the sword in the opening half; their forward inefficiency restricting their advantage to 22 points at the long break, despite having 12 more scoring shots.
City took control of the contest with three goals in the third term to shoot out to an insurmountable 35-point lead by the final change before putting the cue back in the rack in the last quarter.
The irrepressible Aaron Purvis led the way for the Saints, with Nathan Peterson and Ray Lengyel also impressing. Former Hawthorn and Melbourne Storm rookie Shem Tatupu played his best game for the club, while Mykelti Lefau booted three goals.
Dynamic forward Steve Murray played virtually a lone hand for the Demons, slotting five of his side’s seven goals.
East Malvern 9.6 (60) def by Cheltenham 9.10 (64)
Cheltenham have recorded its best win in years, upsetting the fancied East Malvern by four points at Dunlop Reserve to keep its finals hopes alive.
As expected it was the hosts that made the early running, grabbing an early advantage which they maintained throughout the first three quarters.
But the longer the game dragged on the better the Rosellas got, and by the final change they were just two goals adrift.
What transpired next was 23 minutes of remarkable grit and character from Cheltenham, who, with their season on the line, thoroughly outplayed one of Division 1’s premiership contenders.
They managed to keep the stunned Panthers scoreless for the quarter, before Will McTaggart’s second goal of the term at the 17-minute mark put the Rosellas ahead for the first time in the match. They held firm in the final minutes to secure a memorable victory and keep themselves within four points of the top five.
Jake Hibbert, Jack Barclay and Daniel Vaughan were superb in the Rosella’s victory, with McTaggart and Dean Kelly contributing five of the team’s nine goals.
Mark Tyrell, Xavier Linton (four goals) and Ben Timms were best for East Malvern, who have now been unseated from the top three on the back of three consecutive losses.
Port Melbourne Colts 14.8 (92) def by St Pauls 16.14 (110)
Port Melbourne have given St Pauls an almighty fright at JL Murphy Reserve, with a brilliant final term blitz handing the second-placed Dogs an 18-point victory.
The gallant Colts went goal-for-goal with the visitors in a tight first half, before slamming through six goals to two in the premiership quarter to streak to a 28-point advantage at the final change.
Memories of the shock two-point defeat in the corresponding match last season would no doubt have come flooding back in to the minds of many of the Dogs faithful, however, fears of a repeat result were quickly allayed as St Pauls produced one of its best quarters of the season.
With its backs to the wall, the Dogs lifted its endeavour and dominated through the centre, piling on 7.4 to 0.0 to sink the impressive Colts and record a stirring come-from-behind victory.
Matt Kreymborg was again a dominant force for the winners, finishing with four goals in an eye-catching performance, while Steve Muller also stood out with three majors. Alex Spencer also excelled in his return following two weeks with Port Melbourne.
Colts forward Tom Nicholls almost won the game off his own boot, finishing with eight goals in an offensive masterclass, while Cal Cathcart also did well against his former side.
Oakleigh District 10.9 (69) def Mordialloc 11.13 (79)
After an uncompetitive display against the Saints last week, Oakleigh District were out to make a statement against Mordialloc. And that they did, running the ladder leaders to within 10 points in a physical encounter at Princes Highway Reserve.
With the Bloods entering the clash with 10 straight wins behind them, few pundits would have given the eight-placed Oaks much of a chance, however, they quickly proved they were up to the task.
While Mordialloc led for most of the day, there was never more that 13 points between them at any of the breaks, including a one-point margin at half time.
The Oaks were not intimidated by the physically imposing Bloods and refused to take any backward steps as they took the fight up to the flag favourites. And while they had their chances to steal victory in the last quarter, the experience of the Mordialloc side stood out as they held on in a tense battle.
Ed Murphy, Alisdair Jackson and Aaron Kneebone helped get the Bloods over the line, with James Morris booting four vital goals.
For the Districts, veteran Paul Fermanis led the way with four majors, while Simon Black and Daniel Spence also provided solid contributions.
Dingley 17.22 (124) def Chelsea Heights 4.2 (26)
The Heighters proved no match for the might of Dingley as they were thrashed to the tune of 98 points at the Den.
The day started brightly for Chelsea Heights, with three goals in the first term filling their supporters with optimism as they led by two points at the first change. However, hope quickly turned to despair as they managed just one more major for the match.
Lucas Walmsley and Danny Ades simply did as they pleased to help propel the Dingoes to their sixth win of the season, while Kane Davidson and Peter Rizzi topped the list of 11 individual goalkickers with three each.
Ben Finemore, Peter Gerard (two goals) and Daniel Campisano were the shining lights on another tough day at the office for Chelsea Heights.