Bundoora's Jess King. PHOTO: Nathan William Media/NFNL

Bundoora have drawn one step closer to a top-three finish in the Northern Football Netball League’s Division 1 competition after defeating Hurstbridge by 37 points at Yulong Reserve.

The Bulls imposed their attacking game plan early and looked to take hold of the game until a change of weather would alter the atmosphere of the match.

The Bridges first took advantage of the wet conditions, but Bundoora would adapt and make the most of Hurstbridge’s inaccuracy for an 11.8 (74) to 4.13 (37) victory.

With North Heidelberg’s loss to Greensborough, Michael Ryan’s men return to the top three heading into the final fortnight of the campaign while the Bridges have dropped out of the top five, making their clash against the Boro next week a must-win.

Jedd Longmire had the ball on a string throughout the match for the Bulls, dominating the clearance count with thunderous kicking that helped to open up the ground for Sam Lloyd to slot three goals.

Lachlan East would help limit the impact of the in-form Joel Naylor, while John Jorgensen’s return was also a key to his side’s victory.

For the visitors, William Cookson’s willingness to always go hard in a contest and compose his side with his play of the ball made him the most consistent player through all four quarters.

Ethan Taylor, Mitchell Moschetti and Mitchell Hymus all contributed heavily with their decision-making and poise that would be instrumental in helping the Bridges establish their attack up forward.

Bundoora would come out charging, with Jesse King leading up forward and then knocking down the first major of the day.

A burst out of the pack by Jake Hobbs would be followed by a bending snap that went through the big sticks, before fresh off a seven-goal haul last week, Hamish Shepheard unleashed a nice long-range major to push the margin to 18-points.

Hurstbridge were quick to snatch momentum back, with goals from Samuel House and Christopher McCabe coming in set shot fashion to bring the game back to within a goal.

Lloyd would open the second term up with a sensational goal from near the centre square, to bring the margin out to 13 points.

The Bulls would find the scoreboard again thanks to Jake Hobbs, whose goal topped off a terrific first half for him around the ground.

Joel Cordwell’s side would be the side to close out a first half heavily affected by rain as a Mitchell Moschetti major made it 14 points for his team to chase at the main break.

As they did in the first half, the hosts came out strong in the second. Nathan Thomas got on the end of an impressive passage to slot through his first before a steal from Jesse King allowed him to run in and kick truly.

Hurstbridge’s response came from Joel Naylor, who looked to insert himself into the game with a great mark and goal to reduce the deficit to 20 points.

However, the Bulls would again bounce back to close out the quarter.

Lloyd’s snap-on goal signalled his second major of the afternoon and the return of a 20-point lead for his side heading into the final break following a plethora of misses from the Bridges.

With their accuracy at goal being the visitors’ downfall throughout, it would only continue to hinder their chances to snatch the lead and take control of the match during the final term.

A major from Lloyd would start the fourth in a similar fashion to how the third ended, while Daniel Younan would follow with a goal from a set distance to push the lead out to 34 points.

The final nail in the Bridges coffin would be hammered by Hobbs, as his third major of the game cemented a 39-point for Bundoora.

BUNDOORA: 3.3 5.5 8.6 11.8 (74)
GOALS: J. Hobbs 3, S. Lloyd 3, J. King 2, D. Younan, N. Thomas, H. Shepheard.
BEST: J. Longmire, J. Jorgensen, L. East, S. Lloyd, J. Hobbs, J. Davies.

HURSTBRIDGE: 2.3 3.3 4.10 4.13 (37)
GOALS: M. Moschetti, J. Naylor, C. McCabe, S. House.
BEST: W. Cookson, E. Taylor, M. Hymus, M. Moschetti, J. Richards, K. Agosta.

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