Calder Cannons got their first win of the TAC Cup season against Gippsland Power at the weekend.
It’s been a tough season so far for the Cannons, but on Saturday they played with confidence and poise.
They grabbed an early lead and held onto it, winning 18.9 (117)-12.13 (85).
For Cannons coach Andrew Johnston it reinforced a belief that the team is heading in the right direction.
“The attitude and work rate has improved,” he said.
“We made an emphasise on starting well and continuing that.
“We knew we had the game in our hands. Our guys were able to respond under pressure.
“They missed a few shots and we were able to go down the other end and capitalise. In the past it had been us missing shots.”
Mitchell Podhajski, who has played all his football at the Cannons in defence, relished the opportunities up forward and booted six goals to be best on ground.
Johnston said it may be one of a number of positions Podhajski plays this season.
“I’m not sure [if he’s played forward before]” he said. “Mitch has been giving a lot of run off half-back and we spoke about making the move during the week and try and catch them off guard.
“He’s worked a lot on his kicking, which helps in front of goal.”
Jack Bytel and Ben Huggard were also among the best for the Cannons.
The Cannons don’t have long to savour their win, with a clash against undefeated Geelong Falcons on Friday night.
Johnston said it would be a good challenge for his improving side.
“We’re always talking about effort and with a win there will be a little bit of belief there,” he said. “[But] We’ve still got a long way to go …They’ve smashed us the last couple of times down there.”
The Falcons enter the game on the back of a 65-point win against Northern Knights.