United blows its Nathalia Blues away

July 04, 2017

Corey Nexhip of Tongala handballs during the MFNL seniors match between Tongala and Echuca United. Photo by Luke Hemer.

ECHUCA UNITED claimed the Campaspe Cup on Saturday, bouncing back from its loss to Nathalia to belt Tongala by 75 points.

Challenged early, the Eagles kicked nine goals to one in the final quarter to blow the Blues away, in the process taking a handy boost to their percentage which could be helpful later in the Murray Football League season.

The result meant they remained fifth on the ladder, one spot ahead of Moama who they will face in the first game back from the Murray League’s general bye.

United coach Guy Campbell said to beat Tongala without playing much of its best football was great for the club.

‘‘Overall it’s a positive to get the win, and to win by that margin,’’ he said.

‘‘We still didn’t play four quarters, but to win without doing that shows when we string our best football together, we can take it up to most sides.’’

Campbell said his side had sprung into action in the final term when the Blues had kicked within 16 points.

‘‘It was three quarters of getting away with just doing enough, and that can happen against the lower-ranked teams,’’ he said.

‘‘They kicked the first goal of the last term, but then it was our full squad deciding we’d played about enough, let’s have a real crack from here.’’

Both teams came out with a point to prove and it was United able to get slightly in front in the early stages, leading by 13 points at quarter-time.

Its advantage continued in the second term with five goals to zero, Tongala left to rue kicking 0.6 in the quarter as it trailed by 28 points at the main break, its play warranting the game being much closer than it was.

The third quarter was tight, this time it was the Blues with the slight edge to trail by just 22 points, theoretically with the game still within reach.

But the Eagles wouldn’t let that happen and found their best form for the day to make sure of the result, booting 9.7 (61) for the term to extend out to the 75-point margin.

Farran Priest again led the way up forward with five goals, Peter Quanchi, Nic Denahy and Anthony McMahon all contributing three to help them post the comfortable win.

Campbell said the side had performed evenly across the ground, doing more than enough to win the contest.

‘‘The midfield was strong, the forwards were strong, everyone had their go,’’ he said.

‘‘Every line had it ups and downs, and it was predominantly ups.’’

Dean Moon and Brayden Worsnop also played well to help the Eagles take control in the middle of the ground.

Connor Brown impressed his coach in his first full senior game, while sub player Jordan Godfrey did the same.

‘‘The club is in a good position with youth like that coming through, we feel confident with any substitute player,’’ he said.

For Tongala, Bryce Denham had one of his best games of the year to be named in the best players and kick three goals for the Blues.

Riley Bacon, Jack Monigatti, Bailey Cox and Daniel Cox all contributed well.

It has lost its last five games to fall to a 3-9 record, now ranked ninth on the ladder.

Meanwhile, the Eagles are well placed to challenge deep into the finals should they kick on in the last six games.

‘‘We’re in a good position, we just need to exceed expectations in our winnable games and have a real crack at the teams above us,’’ Campbell said.

‘‘We’re pretty confident with where we are at, we’re getting through that middle of the season patch where every club is getting back a few players from injury and getting ready to have a crack with just six games until potentially playing finals football.’’

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