Macleod all but secured the Northern Football/Netball League Division 1 minor premiership with a runaway 25-point win over Greensborough at War Memorial Park yesterday.
[ABOVE: Joel Kidd. PHOTO: Supplied/NFNL]
Trailing by a straight kick at the half-time break, the Roos outscored the Boro by nine goals to five in the second half to record their 11th win in a row.
The 15.12 (102) to 12.5 (77) win moved Macleod four wins clear atop the table, and put it in the box seat to secure a second-successive minor premiership in the top flight, a first in the club’s history.
Greensborough went into the game on a three-game winning streak but remained in second place despite the loss. The Boro now sit on equal points with the four sides below them, setting the scene for a riveting final six rounds of the home and away campaign.
It was Greensborough, on its home turf, who got off to the better start, kicking the first two goals of the match through Scott Clark and Jesse Presser to hold an early 13-point advantage.
Hamish Paynter kicked one against the run of play for the Roos, but Ben Pannam replied swiftly for Greensborough to restore the two-goal buffer for the home side.
Despite dominating the clearances and inside 50 counts, the Boro weren’t able to fully capitalise on their opportunities, as late goals to Anthony Doherty and Luke Joyce saw Macleod cut the margin to just one point at quarter time.
The Roos took their first lead of the match inside the first two minutes of the second term when Shane Doherty converted his chance from close range to give his side a five-point buffer.
The ladder-leader began to control the contest but couldn’t apply scoreboard pressure as Greensborough’s backline – led by Nick Riddle – absorbed plenty of pressure from their visitors.
The momentum shifted late in the term and Pannam was able to kick two goals in two minutes for the Boro, giving his side a six-point advantage at the main break.
As has been the case for much of the 2018 season, Macleod produced a dominant third quarter to turn the game on its head.
The Roos kicked three of the opening four goals to take a 10-point advantage, with Greensborough’s only major a goal of the year contender by Billy Murphy – who took possession on centre wing before exploding for a fantastic running goal.
A Zac McCubbin goal moved Greensborough within four points, however late majors to Lucas Hobbs and Joel Kidd saw Macleod go into the fourth term with an 18-point lead.
An early goal in the last quarter to Patrick Martin looked to have sealed the game for the Roos, but the home side was able to mount one last challenge.
Greensborough went on to kick the next three goals in the space of five minutes to bring the margin down to just six points, as the home faithful began to sniff a massive come-from-behind win.
However, Macleod showed why it is the side to beat this year and rallied in the best possible way. Rourke Turner kicked a vital goal entering time-on, which began a late flurry as the Roos finished with all the running to streak to a 25-point win.
Final score: Greensborough 12.5 (77) def by Macleod 15.12 (102)