CATS TAME LIONS
Finley young gun Matt Wilson has steered his side to their biggest win of the year, booting seven goals in a 68 point victory over Mulwala in round 14 of the Murray Football League on Saturday.
The win marked an important result for the Cats who now sit sixth on the ladder and within reach of the top four, just one game behind Rumbalara and Cobram, who are fourth and fifth respectively.
Playing at Lonsdale Reserve in Mulwala, the Cats began strongly applying plenty of pressure on the Lions’ defence.
A strong tackle from forward Scott Sherwen and a resultant 50m penalty saw Finley post the first goal of the day.
The home side were quick to reply with a major from a boundary throw in and soon after key forward Ashley Froud led Mitch Ryan under the ball to kick his first.
Young forwards Josh Allan and Matt Wilson combined to give Wilson his first for the day and the scores were locked together at the first break.
The second quarter was one of Finley’s best for the season.
The backline held tight repelling all Mulwala forward entries while initiating many attacking moves.
Ryan nullified Froud’s influence on the match and Nick and Angus Robertson continued their recent good form working in unison with Tommy McCarney across half back.
Lachlan Hawkins started to control the ruck duel against Hamish Hosking providing the Cats’ play makers first use of the ball.
Ed Barlow, Tim Mead and Tim McKenzie relished the opportunity and the visitors piled on six goals for the term, while keeping the Lions scoreless.
A 41 point margin at the half time break was soon cut to 29 when Mulwala kicked the first two of the third quarter.
The spark for Finley came from the youngest team member Ben Ashley-Cooper, marking strongly on the 50m arc, cleverly setting Angus Robertson up for a long goal.
The Cats then went into overdrive kicking a further eight goals for the second half while restricting the Lions to four.
Final score, Finley 17.12 (114) to Mulwala 6.10 (46).
Finley coach Rob Daniel said it was easily his side’s biggest win for the season.
‘‘It’s one of the hardest trips in the league going across to Mulwala so in my mind it’s our best win all year,’’ he said.
‘‘I spoke at quarter time about our pressure, it was good but I wanted a bit more.
‘‘We would’ve had about 75 per cent of the ball in the second quarter and were winning the battle in all areas of the ground.’’
The Cats enjoy a favourable fixture this week, hosting Katandra who sit 14th with just two wins.