Epping is getting closer to getting its first win of the Northern Football League division 2 season.
The Pingers have performed creditably in the majority of games this season, but have been left to rue poor periods here or there.
Pingers coach Aaron Johnson said they were getting closer to playing four full quarters.
“The margins are getting smaller and smaller,” he said. “And the lapses that we’re having here and there are getting smaller, too.
“We’ve had close to 30 players used already, so there’s plenty of opportunities. People need to be given opportunities to see if they can play.
“We’ve got eight or nine new players playing senior football for the club for the first time.
“That’s a third of the side that hasn’t played together before.”
He said that despite not getting wins, the club was happy generally happy.
Johnson said the side was starting to gel on and off the field.
The players participated in an Amazing Race team-bonding event, which was a big success.
“It went for 24 to 25 kilometres,” he said. “They were excited about it and it gets them closer, building relationships on and off the field.”
On Saturday, the Pingers were left to rue a poor period against St Mary’s, which cost them any chance of victory.
Just six points separated the teams at half-time, before St Mary’s kicked five goals to one in the third quarter to open the game up.
That was enough to secure a 14.13 (97)-9.12 (66) win.
“It was a 10-minute period in the third quarter that cost us,” Johnson said. “And that was the margin in the game. It wasn’t too different to the Diamond Creek game. Hopefully we have no lapses in the week’s to come.”
Skipper Leigh Judd was the Pingers’ best, continuing his good.
Johnson said Judd had been the stan-out for the side this season, adapting well to his role as captain.
Chris Chilcott up forward, Billy Hughes down back and Reed Jepson in his first game for the season were the other good players on Saturday.
Epping faces an interrupted few weeks, with byes and competition-wide byes.
Johnson said having such an interrupted start to the season wasn’t ideal.
“We played four games over six weeks to start the season,” he said.
“We have a bye this week and then play two games and then a double bye. It’s two games in five weeks.
“At the back of the year we play 10 games straight. Hopefully, we’ll be in our new facilities then.”
In other results, Thomastown beat Watsonia 16.21 (117)-9.7 (61).
In division 1, Bundoora lost its first match since round one, going down to Macleod 12.13 (85)-10.6 (66).
In division 3, Laurimar and South Morang both had wins, while Mernda and Lalor suffered losses.