All down to timing
LANCASTER EYEING FIRST TOP SIX SCALP
Lancaster playing coach Nick Bertoli is well aware of his team’s status heading into Saturday’s elimination final against Stanhope.
The Wombats were the last team to book their finals place and are coming off three games against the bottom sides.
While Lancaster will start as a heavy outsider in the cutthroat match at Undera, Bertoli said his group was quietly confident.
‘‘They’re (Stanhope) a good side and you don’t finish third on the ladder if you’re not, but we’ll play our footy and give it a redhot crack,’’ Bertoli said.
‘‘I think we’ve been playing the top footy we’ve been trying to play, it doesn’t matter who we play, we just go out there and try to do our thing.’’
Lancaster is yet to beat another team in the top six this season, but its form line is not bad.
The Wombats lost against Nagambie, Avenel and Stanhope by an average of 11 points and should have pinched at least one of those games.
‘‘We know we can match it with the top sides because we’ve had our opportunities this year, we’ve been consistent with our efforts and the message to the players will be our type of footy is good enough,’’ Bertoli said.
Michael Hill has been firing up forward for the Wombats with 18 goals in the past two games to take his season tally to 43.
Andrew Pettigrove, Sam Spedding, Alex Kydd and Steve Thomson have been in good touch.
Bertoli said he expected to go in with a full side after demolishing Rushworth by 72 points last week.
Stanhope is flying into September after a memorable 43-point win against Tallygaroopna last Saturday.
Renowned forward Jack Exell was moved to defence in a masterstroke from coach Brenton Gray, freeing the lively goalkicker up after his output had been down in the forward half.
James Gray kicked six majors in a commanding display up forward.
The Lions got the job done when the teams met in an incredible round 13 game, reeling in a five-goal deficit midway through the last quarter. Filling his boots:
Michael Hill (right) has kicked 18 goals in his past two games and will need to continue his purple patch if Lancaster is to upset Stanhope in Saturday’s elimination final for its first top six scalp of the year.