Bears roll Hoppers in tough local derby
Rennie playing-coach Craig Ednie suffered a serious torso injury in the Hoppers’ 22-point loss to Tungamah on Saturday.
The star will remain in hospital in Wangaratta for the next few days after fracturing three ribs and suffering a punctured lung during the final quarter of the match.
“They’ve just got to monitor him and make sure he’s all good,” Rennie president Andrew Starr said.
“He doesn’t have a timeline yet as to when he will be back.”
The injuries stemmed from an errant knee to Ednie’s back from a Tungamah opponent during a marking contest.
“He was backing into where a Tungamah player was taking a mark and got a knee in the back, there was nothing at all untoward about it,” Starr said.
Tungamah took victory 14.9 (93) to 10.11 (71) in what could only be described as a fierce contest, with players going down with injuries at regular intervals.
Rennie’s Cooper Bennett broke his collarbone in the defeat, also in the last term, compounding his side’s woes.
Meanwhile, Tungamah’s Glenn Dominick (broken finger), Damian Payne (cheek bone) and Jacob Sampson (ankle) are all sweating on x-ray results to determine the severity of their respective ailments.
“We just have to wait and see how bad they are,” Bears’ co-coach Jeremy O’Brien said.
“It was a real good, physical game of country football.
“Unfortunately there were a few injuries, but from a spectator’s point of view it would have been a great game to watch.”
New Bears recruit Brent Chapman, who has experience at clubs including the Shepparton Bears, Numurkah and Murchison, provided the shining light on the day with six goals.
O’Brien said the signing of Chapman, who booted 100 goals for Murchison as recently as 2015, was a huge boost for Tungamah.
“It’s certainly not going to hurt our chances, that’s for sure,” he said.
“It gives us another avenue to goal, he’s a very difficult match-up because he’s quick and still strong too.
“With Ash Saunders and Adam Dodd out the last few weeks we’ve been rotating four or five players through that full forward position, so he will help a lot.”
The Hoppers began the better of the two sides, but could not retain the ascendancy after quarter-time.
“We probably didn’t start that well, they’re certainly well structured,” O’Brien said.
“It is pleasing to get the win, but we need to play four quarters and have a bit more consistency.”
Chase Strawhorn led the way for the visitors up forward with five goals, while Travis Hayes was named best afield for the Bears.
“They were just too good on the day,” Starr said.
“We know we can match it with them, we just didn’t play real good in the second and third quarters, so we just need to play a full game.”
It was ‘no holds barred’ in the match between Tungamah and Rennie for derby bragging rights on Saturday. Lachlan Davis and Travis Hayes lock it up in the midst of senior football action.
Bodhi Butts gets the ball away under pressure.
Tom Wilson lines up his kick for the Bears.