The Northern Knights won a second consecutive thriller in a wet Round 6 to improve their record to 4-2 and remain entrenched in the top eight in fifth position.
The Knights came from 21 points down midway through the last quarter to snatch victory from the Dandenong Stingrays (6th, 3-3) by three points at Preston City Oval.
Just a week after pipping the Bendigo Pioneers by the same margin, Northern hit the lead for the first time through a long goal from captain Nick Coffield 26 minutes into the final term. Shortly after, Oliver Wilson laid a goal-saving tackle inside Dandenong’s forward 50 to save the match for the Knights.
Wilson laid a game-high 11 tackles, while teammates Jamison Shea (25 disposals and four goals) and Jack Petruccelle (20 disposals, 17 contested possessions and a goal) were influential.
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The top-of-the-table Geelong Falcons maintained their unbeaten start to the season by defeating a dogged Western Jets outfit (11th, 2-4) by 24 points at Burbank Oval.
Western slammed on the game’s first five goals before Geelong responded to create an eight-point lead at quarter-time. The Falcons then managed to hold the Jets at arm’s length for the rest of the match, with 194cm Adam Garner booting three goals and bottom-age NAB AFL Academy midfielder Sam Walsh (34 disposals) the leading ball-winner on the ground.
The Murray Bushrangers (5-1) sit in outright second spot on the ladder following a hard-fought 19-point win against the Calder Cannons (12th, 0-6) at Rams Arena.
Murray looked to be cruising to victory with a 30-point lead at half time and having restricted Calder to a solitary goal. But the Cannons came out firing in the third quarter, piling on six goals to two and then moving to within four points of the lead in the final term before the Bushrangers steadied. Jessy Wilson kicked three important majors for the victors while Harry Jones collected a game-high 26 disposals.
The Oakleigh Chargers (4th, 4-2) held onto their place in the top four after accounting for the GWV Rebels (8th, 2-4) by 40 points at Warrawee Park.
Oakleigh was only seven points in front at the main break but blew the game open in the third quarter with six goals to GWV’s one behind. Jack Higgins stood out in difficult conditions for the Chargers with 28 disposals and one major, while Jordan Troani was also a key contributor (21 disposals, seven inside-50s and a goal).
203cm Sam Hayes was the match-winner with six goals for the Eastern Ranges (10th, 2-4) in their two-point triumph over the Gippsland Power (7th, 2-4) in Healesville. 19-year-old Jordan Lynch’s two majors were also important for the winners.
In Round 6’s final match, Bendigo (9th, 2-4) claimed the scalp of the Sandringham Dragons (3rd, 4-2) by 21 points at Queen Elizabeth Oval. Braydan Torpey slotted three goals for the Pioneers while Darby Henderson (35 disposals) and Angus Schumacher (28) ran rampant through the middle.
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