It was a big day for the Goolwa/Port Elliot Football Club as they welcomed home Ryan Griffen, but Langhorne Creek are sharpening up for a tilt at back to back flags and they had no room for sentiment.
The Hawks upset the awaited homecoming of Ryan Griffen winning by 91 points. The first quarter couldn't have started worse for the Magpies, as they had a little bit of early control, but just made poor decisions and allowed Langhorne Creek to rebound too easily from half forward.
With Derham setting up play at half back, the Creek were soon on the board as Sellar, Howell, Kellock and McGregor were all performing. Through Paul and Cinc, the Magpies had enough of the ball, but just couldn't penetrate and played right in to the Hawks' hands with too many turnovers. The Magpies proved they could be competitive, but were 29 points down at quarter time
The second quarter and the Magpies did switch on and hit the scoreboard with a good goal to Robinson, set up by Ryan Griffen and soon after, Ferguson kicked a beautiful snap on his left. But Langhorne Creek still found avenues to goal as Howell snagged a major and McGregor got one over the back.
Cooper and Blackwell were in everything and the Sellar and Kellock combination severely hurt the home side. The game wasn't done, but at half time, full control to Langhorne Creek who led by 44 points.
In a repeat of their previous meeting, the Magpies looked the better side in the third as the crowd became vocal. Ryan Griffen was showing his class, brother Trent was heavily involved and James Fry continued to stop forward entries with his overhead marking ability under pressure.
Goals to Robinson, Ferguson and Neville had the Magpies up and about, but the Creek to their credit didn't panic and they did hold as Kellock caused chaos with his fourth and Howell again bobbed up. James and Perrey really showed leadership. The margin out to 45 points, but it appeared the Magpies had a spring in their step
If the Magpies thought they could come over the top then they'd need to start hard and fast, but they just couldn't create anything of substance without horrible mistakes.
Langhorne Creek on the other hand were ruthless. They put their foot down and kept it there, as they piled on seven goals to none. McGregor with his fourth and then Kellock notched up his sixth and it was officially a rout. Nissen, Cinc, Paul and James kept chipping away, but when Ryan Griffen hit the post for his fourth point, it was just not going to be any home coming fairytale.
In the end a big 91 point win to Langhorne Creek. Kellock and Sellar the clear standouts while Cooper, James an Perrey played well, as did Clegget end Arbon. For the Magpies, James Fry a clear best with Neville, Paul, Ryan Griffen and Cinc doing all they could.
Demons play four quarters
Willunga are in top form and sitting on top of the ladder and on Saturday they were not going to let Yankalilla upset their plans. A loss for the Demons would open the door for either Mount Compass or Victor Harbor to snatch the coveted top position. The Tigers were ruthless early and let Willunga know they had a game on their hands.
Jed Durdin was causing the Willunga defence some headaches and Kelly was active too, as Yankalilla led by four points at the first change. Although Willunga regained the lead by half time, the Tigers' inaccuracy was hurting. Gotch, Laba, Tyllis and Bond were playing well and the Willunga defence led by Alexopoulos was under plenty of heat during the first half. Scores at half time were Willunga 8-5 to Yankalilla 5-4.
The third term was a grind with Yankalilla not letting Willunga get their game going. Jesse Fitzgerald was playing well for the Tigers and Scanlan, Renney, Lee and Burdett were being creative for Willunga.
With the margin only 27 points at the last change and the Tigers playing at home with the crowd being vocal, there was a possibility an upset could occur. The strength of Bass and the skillful running and ball use of the Demons made certain no comeback was forthcoming. They kicked 6-5 to the Tigers 1-1 to end up winning by a comfortable 61 points.
It was a tough game, but the Tigers could not go with the Demons for the full four quarters.