Strathalbyn upset finals hopeful McLaren in Great Southern football

EAT DIRT: McLaren running machine Joel Vandeleur rides Strathalbyn onballer Richard O'Grady into the turf on Saturday in the A grade game the Roosters won.
EAT DIRT: McLaren running machine Joel Vandeleur rides Strathalbyn onballer Richard O'Grady into the turf on Saturday in the A grade game the Roosters won.

McLaren were at home and after a good win against Mount Compass last week came into the match full of confidence to get a break on the premiership table over Strathalbyn.

The Roosters had other ideas who came to play with one of their best displays of the season. The first quarter was a tight tussle with plenty of niggle, both sides not very efficient going forward and defenders very desperate as you would expect early in the match.

It was Mclaren forwards Mutton and Wakefield along with the pace of Jim Mathews who all scored to give McLaren a three goal to one lead and looking the better side at quarter time. In the second term Strathalbyn took control of the midfield and turned this match on its head.

Tucker was brilliant kicking two goals along the way and the two Elliott brothers were also getting plenty of the footy giving their forward targets plenty of opportunities. Pegler, O'Grady and Simounds all were on the scoreboard and McLaren looked second rate with sloppy skills and turnovers galore.

Strath took control kicking six goals to McLaren's one to lead by 18 points at half time. McLaren, after a rev up at half time, came out with more desperation kicking three goals to get back into the match, but Strathalbyn lifted the pressure around the contests.

More McLaren it was players like the Mathews boys who were trying to lift the team. However, Pegler was having a great match for Strath and kicked two goals and O'Grady was in the face of anyone who wanted to come near him and scored another major to keep a 25 point lead at three quarter time.

McLaren tried to lift in the last, but were just having a poor day with more skill errors hurting them badly whilst Strathalbyn tackled well, built pressure and had all the questions thrown at them, which they answered with a fully deserved win.

Best for Strathalbyn were Pegler who topped his great game with four goals, Sam Elliott, O'Grady with three goals, Tucker, Kenyon, Marc Elliott and James.

Best for McLaren were James Mathews, Hopkins, Ellison, Goodieson, Vandeleur and Lachlan Mathews.

This ties the two teams with eight wins each in fifth and sixth spot making for a very interesting last four matches.

The season is very tight with six teams vying for a place in the 2019 Great Southern Football League finals. Willunga, Mount Compass and Victor Harbor are fighting for top spot and Langhorne Creek is hitting form and McLaren and Strathalbyn will be fighting for fifth all the way to round 18.

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