Sam Larsen has capped off his Cootamundra Blues career in style, booting a game high 3 goals to help deliver his side a victory in his final outing for his boyhood club. Cootamundra controlled the game from start to finish, running out 13.17.95 to 2.2.14 winners over the Eastlake Demons.
With the rain settling in before the first bounce the Blues knew they would be in for a tough, physical matchup. Despite the testing conditions, the home side were able to jump out to a 29 point lead at the first break. Full forward Luke Webb made the most his of limited time with a dry football, kicking two early goals and setting up another. He was well supported up forward by Zac Oliver who didn't let the slippery conditions bother him, taking tough contested marks at will.
The second quarter was much of the same with the home side extending their lead past 6 goals and maintaining their stranglehold on the contest. The Blues back six were again strong, repelling the Eastlake forwards at every advance. Max Tiernan once again showed his class at centre half back. Despite being just 17 years old, Max has been dominant in his sides two outings so far and will be a huge asset to the Blues this season.
With a solid lead coming out of the half, Blues coach Joe Scott instructed his troops to not switch off and allow their opposition back into the contest as they had the previous week. Ruckman Sam Baldock and on baller Phil Bird took this upon themselves, combining beautifully to help the Blues further extend their advantage past 60 points. With the rain dampening supporters spirits, it was Larsen who provided the spark. After taking a solid lead up mark, Larsen made no mistake with his set shot, kicking the goal and sending his teammates and supporters into raptures.
The last quarter saw the Blues keep dominating proceedings. Larsen continued to ride the momentum from the previous quarter, snagging a further two goals to help drive his team to the finish line. Dylan McDermott showed no signs of rust in his return to the side and Scott Mazzocchi looked more dangerous as the game went on. Nick Simons also impressed in his debut, attacking the football at every opportunity and showing he can definitely be a contributor this season. The only downside to the comfortable victory was the loss of the returning Jimmy Finucane to a dislocated elbow. Blues supporters will be hoping it's not the last they see of the fiery on baller before he returns home to Western Australia.
Goals: Larsen 3, Oliver 2, Mazzocchi 2, Lu.Webb 2, McDermott 1, M.Tiernan 1, J.Tiernan 1, Bird 1.
Pat Kerin's best: M.Tiernan, Bird, Oliver, Baldock, Larsen and Lu.Webb.
The victory sees the Blues occupy fifth place on the ladder heading into their bye this weekend. Their next opponents will be the perennial powerhouse Woden Blues on the 8th of August.