Romsey put together one of its most complete performances of the Riddell District Football League season on Saturday, strangling Sunbury Kangaroos to take a crucial win.
In a tightly congested top six, the two sides came into the contest on seven wins a piece and with just percentage separating sixth-placed Romsey from the fourth-placed Kangaroos.
Following the 13.8 (86)-8.10 (58) win to the Redbacks at their home base, they now move up to fifth while Sunbury has slipped to seventh and a game out of the finals places.
It was a result not lost on Romsey coach Corey Sullivan.
“It was probably the best game we’ve played so far this year,” Sullivan said.
“The loser of the game was going to be on the back foot and I think the Kangaroos have an easier run home than us so it was important for us to get the result.
“We don’t have a great percentage so the reality for us is we just have to keep winning.”
The two sides traded blows early, with Romsey locking down on the Kangaroos dangerous forwards and limiting the supply from the midfield to establish an 11-point quarter-time lead.
That had been trimmed to eight points at the long break, but the Kangaroos would get no closer as the home side tightened up even more in defence and started to pepper its own goals in a match-winning term.
The Kangaroos could manage just a solitary behind in the third quarter, and while Romsey kicked 2.6 at the other end, the Redbacks had complete control of the contest.
Jack Jedwab was instrumental for the home side with five goals, but it was the evenness of contributions across the ground that stood out for Sullivan.
“We knew Sunbury’s strengths were in the forward half of the ground, so we made sure we had out match-ups right there,” he said.
“We backed ourselves to get the job done around the ground and to the boys’ credit everyone stood up.
“That third quarter where we dominated without quite putting it on the scoreboard really set this win up, and everyone to a man really did their bit.”
Sullivan said his side was confident of first securing a finals spot and then having an impact once September rolled around.
“We’re definitely confident that if the opportunity comes our way in finals that we can give a good account of ourselves,” he said.
“We’ve got a young list, but once they run out there’s no birth certificates out there and they just do the job. Everyone has stood up so far which is a good sign.”