Breakers claim Senior crown
Coffs Harbour Breakers are the Senior Premiers for the second time in three years after claiming a hard fought victory over Port Macquarie Magpies.
The two teams were locked in an enthralling battle for most of the match with neither team able to establish a meaningful lead until the last quarter.
Port were quick out of the blocks to kick the first two goals of the match but Breakers soon settled and hit back on the scoreboard. At the first break Port held a one point lead which was a fair reflection of the evenness of the competition.
Breakers had marginally the better of the play in the second quarter to outscore the Magpies by one goal and take a five point advantage into the sheds at half time.
The third quarter was highlighted by momentum shifts and a flurry of goals for both teams.
Port were first to launch an attack, landing four quick goals including a double to Tom Marmo inside two minutes. This meant that the ‘Pies held a 20 point lead by midway through the term and looked as though they were on their way to their first flag in six years. However Breakers steadied with goals to Liam Paige and Ben Gibbeson to draw themselves back into the contest. Jesse Schmidt added one for Port, then Breakers turned momentum their way with goals to Shaydan Close, Chris Holten, and Liam Paige again to edge in front by just four points.
Port had a chance to reclaim the lead after the three quarter time siren but couldn’t capitalise with a set shot and went to the break trailing by three.
The Magpies struggled to get going after the last break whereas Breakers picked up where they left off. An electric long run and goal by speedster Aidan Wallace early in the quarter signified the difference in energy levels between the two teams. Breakers finished the job with a four goal final quarter whilst also holding Port to just one behind for the term.
Shaydan Close was deemed the Best on Ground and was duly presented with the Woodlock Medal. Close and Liam Paige each had four goals for the match, Ben Gibbeson kicked three, and Nick Stanlan-Velt had two.
For Port, Jesse Schmidt kicked four goals despite suffering a knee injury before half time, while Tom Marmo’s two goals made him the only other multiple goal kicker.
Coffs Harbour Breakers 16.8 (104) defeated Port Macquarie Magpies 11.10 (66)
Coffs Harbour Breakers claim the second Senior flag in the club’s five year history which is a highly impressive feat.
Congratulations to both teams on an outstanding Grand Final.
Reports on the Women’s and Under 17 matches will be online tomorrow (Tuesday 10 September), while the Reserve Grade report will be online on Wednesday (11 September).