Tigers get roar back

May 26, 2024 10:30 am in by
Bannockburn coach Ron Pilgrim. (Darren Phillips)

Bannockburn coach Ron Pilgrim believes finding consistency is his team’s next challenge after snapping a two-game losing streak by beating a battling Bell Post Hill by 63 points at Myers Reserve.

Riled by consecutive losses at home, the fourth-placed Tigers returned to somewhere near their best in the 18.9 (117) to 8.6 (54) victory, maintaining a six-point break on sixth-placed Inverleigh approaching the season’s halfway mark.

“Our best is really good, and I think it’s just mental lapses,” Pilgrim said.

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“We did it again yesterday in the second quarter, but for three quarters yesterday, we were outstanding.

“There was definitely a point to prove. We had a bit of chat during the week and tried to work out why we’re having these lapses.

“Losing at home is something we don’t do too often, and we’ve lost three games at home this year.”

Pilgrim conceded Bannockburn’s ball use let it down against Belmont Lions and Werribee Centrals.

“Our skill level, at times, had been pretty ordinary,” he said. 

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“I had a chat to the boys about the standards we want to have.

“We’ve been pretty successful over the last few years, and our standards have been pretty high.

“Our turnovers were killing us. When you play sides that are up and about, and you turn the footy over – particularly in the corridor – we’re letting sides score too easily.

“The focus was on not turning over the footy too much.”

That focus will remain for a mouthwatering meeting against East Geelong at Victoria Park this week.

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A loss to the Eagles – and a Centrals win over the Lions – would see Bannockburn three games adrift of the top three with nine rounds to play.

“They get a lot of drive off half-back, and they run the ball and carry it pretty well, which they have been doing for a couple of years,” Pilgrim said.

“It will be a really good test for us.

“Sides like East, you’ve got to keep pressure from your forward half.”

Bailey Kelly kicked a season-best four goals, while fellow Leopold recruit Rob Maibaum and captain Tristain Battaglia contributed three apiece.

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Connor Jervies provided constant run from half back in another vintage performance.

Tyler Edwards made it consecutive two-goal games for the Panthers, who find themselves holding up the ladder.


Belmont Lions took another step towards locking away a first finals berth in nine years after overcoming North Geelong by 37 points at Winter Reserve.

The Lions could never fully shake the improving Magpies, but they now hold an 18-point break on sixth-placed Inverleigh following a 16.10 (106) to 10.9 (69) victory.

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After four goals in his first game of the season last week, Sam Jones went one better with a five-goal haul for the unbeaten ladder leaders.

Michael Murdoch kicked three goals in his best-on-ground performance.

Noah Bily and John Fazio kicked three goals apiece for the visitors.

Inverleigh has pulled to within two points of the top five, but not before receiving an almighty fright from Anakie at Inverleigh Reserve.

Trailing by 14 points at three-quarter time, the Hawks stormed home with a five-goal-to-one final term to claim a 14.8 (92) to 12.10 (82) victory.

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Again, it was Adam Donhoue who carried Inverleigh to victory, with the veteran kicking five goals.

Co-coach Dalton Grunndell contributed three goals, while 150-game Casey Meehan kicked two.

Oscar Barter’s impressive season continued, kicking five goals to take his tally for the season to 17.

East Geelong was made to work for its 28-point win over Winchelsea at Richmond Crescent.

The Eagles extended their lead at every change but could never completely shake the Blues as they banked victory number seven of the season, 12.9 (81) to 8.5 (53).

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East had ten individual goalkickers, with Will Hough and Caleb Lowndes kicking two.

Jordan Gould, Oliver Mahncke and Jack Symmons finished with two goals for Winchelsea.

A Herschelle Carr-inspired Corio climbed off the bottom of the ladder with a comprehensive 60-point win over Geelong West at Shell Reserve.

Carr kicked eight goals in the 18.18 (126) to 10.6 (66) victory to grab a share of the lead on the GDFNL goalkicking table.

Destyn Burns kicked three goals, with Toby Bennett relishing the captaincy role in the absence of injured brother Joel.

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First-gamer Lachie Vassallo was among the four Giants to kick two goals.

The win was Corio’s biggest since beating the Belmont Lions by 64 points in Round 9, 2010.

Werribee Centrals maintained its two-game buffer on fourth-placed Bannockburn after taking care of Thomson by 74 points at Galvin Park.

Led by six goals from Carmelo Saliba, the Centurions 20.12 (132) to 8.10 (58) victory was its first over the Tigers since 2021.

Co-captain Daryl Chesterman was also impressive with three goals.

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First-game Jacob Knight kicked three goals for Thomson, which remains inside the top five by two points.

X: @krockfootball