Launceston secured third spot on the ladder in a back and forth encounter with Glenorchy in the perfect preparation for finals, writes Mitchell Jones.
The Blues, needing a big win to pinch second place off the Magpies and secure a home Qualifying Final, flirted with doing so when they increased their lead to 41 points early in the last term.
The Magpies would not relent, though, as they bounced back quickly by piling on a flurry of goals to get to within two goals of taking the four points away from the Blues and keeping the door ajar for Launceston to slip down the ladder.
If this contest was anything to go by next week’s finals clash between the same two teams will have an eager crowd in attendance when they go head to head at Blundstone Arena.
Launceston’s win came at the hands of a young midfield group really steeping up on the eve of finals to win plenty of the ball against a much more experienced Glenorchy outfit, with Chayce Jones, Jamieson House and Jake Hinds collecting plenty of the ball.
Brayden Webb, along with Daniel Joseph and Harrison Gunther, were some of Glenorchy’s better players
A whirlwind third quarter was what set the win up for Launceston, with young star Chayce Jones dominating play.
Eight goals to one in Launceston’s favour was the main turning point of the game, with Glenorchy coach Paul Kennedy crediting Launceston as “playing smarter football and working harder” during that quarter.
Launceston coach Sam Lonergan attributed both Chyace Jones and Jack Rushton on being very pivotal in his sides’ win, with Rushton being particularly dangerous in front of goal with three crucial goals, while also being thrown on the ball in the last quarter and being very competitive when the game was on the line in the dying minutes.
Saturday’s win to Launceston sees them go into their finals match up against Glenorchy holding the buffer with two wins over the Magpies, both of which have come at Windsor Park by one point and nine points respectively.
Glenorchy has also tasted success over the Blues this season, however, with the Magpies running out 48-point winners when the sides met at KGV in round 14.
However, after such a cracking match at Windsor Park, Lonergan’s Blues will enter the match with confidence after beating every side apart from North Launceston in the top five.
If this match is any indication of what is to come, we are in for a cracker.
Launceston 3.3, 4.5, 12.6, 13.7 (85)
Glenorchy 2.0, 4.4, 6.7, 11.10 (76)
Launceston : J. Rushton 3, J. Harper 2, M. Thorp 2, B. Taylor 2, J. Hinds, H. Leedham, C. Brown, C. Jones
Glenorchy : B. Webb 2, C. French 2, H. Parker, W. Atkin, A. Roberts, D. Joseph, J. Bowden, B. Bester, M. Walker
Launceston : C. Jones, J. Rushton, R. Tyrrell, J. Smith, J. Harper, J. House
Glenorchy : D. Joseph, B. Webb, H. Gunther, J. Bowden, J. Arnold, M. Walker