The Hoppers again fell short on Saturday at Rennie losing to Katunga.
It was an even game early with Dykes on fire at half forward, Harbrow and Ritoli winning clearances and pumping the ball inside 50 and Quinn and Woodhouse hitting the scoreboard.
A fifteen point deficit at quarter time blew out in term 2 as Rennie’s pressure relented and it was left to the fine backline work of Douglass, Evans and Mitchell to hold things together.
Losing Dickens and Dykes by half time did not help the situation but gave the livewire Tom Ryan a chance in his first senior match.
Term 3 saw better quality entries into the 50 area allow goals to Fountain and Sam Ferguson but the Swans were slick with their movement and took a large lead.
The last quarter was 3 goals each, highlighted by a great set shot goal to Wallace under major pressure from the pocket in front of a raucous Rennie two’s group.
Awards: Woods Buslines - Ben Douglass, Mulwala Water Ski Club - Corey Quinn, Andrew Goldman Excavations - Jarryd Fountain, Lake Mulwala Bakery - Josh Ritoli, Cellarbrations - Tom Harbrow, Lake Mulwala Hotel - Tom Ryan.
The reserves lost the match in the first term being 5 goals down at the first break.
After that it was goal for goal as new boys Ben Fitzpatrick the pint sized whippet and Andrew Dishot racked up possessions.
Jake Walsh was back and in great form and it was super to see Dodge Sugden back on the park.
Mention also to coach O’Bryan who gives his heart and soul every week and Smithy who gets treated for leather poisoning every Saturday night.
Awards: Bi Rite Electrical - Ben Fitzpatrick, Lake Mulwala Bakery - Jake Walsh, Lake Mulwala Hotel - Nick Clifton, Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Resort - Adrian Smith, Cellarbrations - Andrew Dishot.
The three’s again played a strong game but with their forward line consisting of fourths players up against much bigger opponents, finishing was again the problem.
Alex Donovan’s increasing maturity and massive defensive kicking was a standout, supported by Tana Freeman who starred in the middle and Brandon Carlin who shows no fear and increasing skill.
Awards: AXT Plumbing - Alex Donovan, Wingates Sports - Brayden Roadley, Belmores Accounting - Tana Freeman, Mulwala Water Ski Club - Dylan Beavis, O’Connors Machinery - Brandon Carlin, Lake Mulwala Bakery - Forgey, Quinny and JO’D
The smallest Hoppers made it 4 out of 5 with a 74 point victory over Katunga.
The evenness of the team is beginning to show out as Josh McInness in the ruck and James Shaw stood out and created scoring opportunites for Quinn who kicked 5 goals and Jack Forge who snagged 3.
Around the ground Loch Forge and Tommy Kennedy were busy and William Wallace is improving with each game.
Awards: Ian and Pauline Ferguson - Josh McInness, STF Engineering - Marcus Quinn, Kennedy Builders - Tom Kennedy, Coghill Electrical - Loch Forge, Redback Waste - Dom McInness, Lake Mulwala Bakery - James Shaw, Rennie Catering Committee - Sam Marshal.l
Katunga 5.5, 11.8, 18.14, 21.18 (144)
Rennie 3.2, 3.2, 5.5, 8.5 (53)
Goals Katunga : Dylan Sidebottom 3, Michael Amadei 3, Jacob Hodgkin 3, Eamon Reeves 2, Joshua Smith 2, Michael Griffiths 2, Shannon Emmett 2, Mitchell Small 2, Spencer Small 1, Bradley Crowther 1
Rennie : Ben Woodhouse 1, Samuel Ferguson 1, Thomas Harbrow 1, Sam Frampton 1, Corey Quinn 1, Jack Kelly 1, Jarryd Fountain 1, Mark Wallace 1
Best Katunga : Liam Reeves, Shannon Emmett, Michael Griffiths, Scott Lardi, Bradley Crowther, Daniel Burness
Rennie : Corey Quinn, Jarryd Fountain, Joshua Ritoli, Mitchell Clifton, Thomas Harbrow, Benjamin Douglass