The game started with a classic match up where the Rhinos Jacko had the job on the Rhinos McCoombe who was a late move to the dark side of Lincoln Park. Lincoln Park, in the absence of MacGlashan, Roofy, Deri, Haysie et al secured Mustard, Bradice and Oscar to name a few to add a lot of strength. The Rhinos, without several themselves went in with a full Rhino team however and the battlelines were drawn.
In a free flowing first quarter goals were surprisingly hard to come by with both teams using an extra man down back to spring board forward. Drake took a ball out of the centre and hit a wide open OBK who went back and went BANG. The wobbly punt fell short but into the open arms of Rhino dangerman, Scott ‘Osama’ Anderson whose resultant goal was the first and only of the quarter. At the first change, WV led 1.4: 10 to 0.2:2
The second quarter started with Gordo snagging one for the Rhinos, quickly followed by a reply from Dougie Malcolm whose errant hamstring was still intact at this stage. The good run and fierce tackling from both teams was remarkable considering the amount of players. The highlight of the second term was Betty Palmer with a MASSIVE hit on big Wolfey that had the Burgmann Medal favorite seeing stars for a while. McCoombe and Jackson were still having the battle royale but big Scottie finally broke the shackles to score another major for the fighting Piranha. Gordo added a couple of more points to his impressive amount of behinds this season and at the half, Wrigleyville clung to a 2.8: 20 to 2.3: 15 lead.
The premiership quarter promised everything and delivered with Ambrosino taking the game by the scruff of the neck and declaring it his as he put the Rhino on his back and tried to get the fat bastard to the line. McCoombe struck first to even the scores before the little Italian fired up. The Rhinos started to move the ball a bit better and once in the forward line Gordo took over, slamming on two majors to go with his 5 points, electrifying the crowd. The Piranhas saw Betty Palmer go down and then Fenton for the Rhinos got the old ankle tap that didn’t please the big Canadian as he looks forward to a big Canada day full of Molson, Labatts blue and some Moose and possibly French Canadian jerky on July 1st. At the orange break, the Rhinos had increased their lead marginally, 4.10: 34 to 3.4: 22. The Piranhas had to come back and with a pumped up and blood engorged Osacr Meyer, were more than capable.
The Rhinos moved Drake onto McCoombe to let Jacko get a run on the ball and shifted Anderson into the ruck to open the forwardline for Gordo. The Piranhas sent Oscar up forward and Mustard onto the ball with Betty Palmer in an effort to turn the game. They needed to strike first but it was Osama pushing forward and after fumbling in the square, realised he had time and picked up the kangaroo skin and slammed it home for the Rhinos to go up by 3 goals.
McCoombe was the recipient of a lovely Xman pass that he was able to slot through to bring the margin back to two goals. Gordo continued to do as he wanted except for kick straight and his impressive amount of 3 straight points pushed him to 3 goals 7 on the day in a performance that was nothing more than Burgmann-esque.
In the end, the Rhinos outlasted a gallant Piranha outfit that was horribly undermanned and coach kastilahn will be looking for a much improved showing as far as numbers are concerned this Friday night as they try to tame Poncho and his Tigers. Kastilahn however, will be very impressed at the effort his charges put in and the pressure they were able to apply around the ground on the Rhinos who were never able to break away. With MacGlashan back along with many others, it will not surprise this scribe to see the Piranhas jump up and bite the Tigers on the bum. The loss of Roofy though is a huge blow.
The Rhinos were ecstatic with the win and go into the break full of piss and vinegar. The form of Ambrosino and Wolfe is wonderful and the return of Anderson has been a big boost. Couple that with the much improved trio of Fenton, Panek and LeBlanc and the Rhinos aren’t looking as bad as they were this time last week after a melt down against the strong Tiger outfit.
|Goals||Rhinos: Ambrosino (3), Anderson (2)
Piranhas: McCoombe (2), Malcolm (2), Meyer
|Best||Rhinos: Ambrosino, Anderson, Wolfe, JJ LeBlanc
Piranhas: Cisco, Kastilan, Thornloe