Melton Centrals were left to rue a poor second quarter as they went down to Rupertswood in the Riddell District Football League.
As has been the case several times this season against top sides, Centrals were in the game.
On previous occasions, a poor quarter here or there had made the difference – and that’s how events again unfolded on Saturday against the Sharks.
For three quarters, Centrals took it up to one of the competition pacesetters.
That one poor quarter, the second, cost them as the Sharks won 8.7 (55)-4.6 (30).
Centrals coach Mathew Sproule said the second quarter inflicted the harm.
“We played some really good footy in the first quarter into the wind,” he said.
“With the wind in the second quarter, we struggled to score and got four goals down.
“We played well in the third quarter and finally were able to get reward for effort in the last quarter, but that second quarter cost us.”
Dylan Weir kicked two goals, while Linton Hogan and Michael Callus were two of the standouts.
Sproule said the match summed up their season.
“We’re not going for four quarters against the top sides,” he said.
“We want to win one of these games and show that we are going in the right direction.”
While Centrals aren’t getting the wins, Sproule said they were happy with their progress.
He said that with a harder draw this year, they had expected that results would not necessarily reflect the side’s status.
Centrals are ninth with four wins.
“We’re where we want to be,” he said. “We’re closing the gap on the top sides and winning the games we should be winning.
“Last year, we lost to Rupertswood by 100 points.
“We’re building momentum and it would now be nice to get some reward for effort.”
Centrals will this week face Woodend-Hesket, which has lost its past four games.
The Hawks came from behind late to beat the Centrals in round two.
Sproule said they were hopeful of having Jonathan Ferri back for the game, but expected Blake Henderson, who also missed Saturday’s loss, to miss a few more games.
In other results, Rockbank fell short against Lancefield.
Both sides were looking for their second win of the season and it was the Rams who lead at the first three breaks.
Then the Tigers kicked the only three goals of the final quarter to win 8.12 (60)-7.6 (48).
Ricky Cameron kicked four goals for the Rams.
Diggers Rest smashed Sunbury Kangaroos, 11.10 (76)-1.8 (14).
Deven Costigan kicked four goals for the Burras in a best-on-ground performance.